Boston Mass Timber Accelerator

Boston Planning & Development Agency, Boston Society for Architecture announce awardees for Mass Timber Grant Program

On March, 17, 2022, the Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) and the Boston Society for Architecture (BSA) announced the awardees for the Mass Timber Accelerator Program, launched in September 2021 to promote mass timber building practices in Boston and the New England region.

Selected Projects:

  • 110 Canal Street, Bulfinch Triangle — Quaker Lane Capital with CBT Architects - A seven-story commercial office building.
  • Eliot Church, Roxbury — Leers Weinzapfel Assoc. Architects and Eliot Congregational Church – A four-story affordable housing project.
  • 401 Chelsea Street, East Boston — ThoughtCraft Architects - Proposed six-story building that will include 40 units of mixed-income affordable housing with ground floor retail space.
  • Mary Ellen McCormack, South Boston — Winn Development, Boston Housing Authority, and CBT Architects - Redevelopment of a public housing project in South Boston that will add 302 units of mixed-income affordable housing.
  • 150 Center Street, Dorchester — Trinity Financial and ICON Architecture - Transit-oriented development that will add 81 units of mixed-income affordable housing next to the Shawmut MBTA Station.
  • Suffolk Downs B16, East Boston — Elkus Manfredi Architects and The HYM Investment Group - A planned eight-story building that will include market rate and affordable housing over ground floor retail space.
  • Q Communities at Suffolk Downs, East Boston — DiMella Shaffer Assoc. Architects and Project Q Communities – Also part of the Suffolk Downs development, a proposed eight-story building that will have 215 units of senior and assisted living housing.

Additional program information and a project gallery is available on the BSA's Mass Timber Accelerator web page.

Learn more

Program Details

The Boston Mass Timber Accelerator will provide development teams with technical assistance and funding grants to assess and integrate low carbon mass timber building practices into their projects.

Boston’s carbon neutral goals and Climate Action Plan 2019 Update call for a range of policy and practice actions for reducing building related carbon emissions. One such policy, the Zero Net Carbon Building Zoning Initiative, is proposed to “strengthen green building zoning requirements to a zero net carbon standard.” Recognizing the significant carbon emissions due to building construction and materials, 23% of annual global emissions, the City of Boston and the Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) see the expansion of mass timber construction practices as a critical step. 

To broaden awareness, identify new opportunities, and accelerate the utilization of mass timber practices in Boston and the New England region, the BPDA and our partners are providing financial and technical assistance to active development projects in the early phases of project planning.  

The Boston Mass Timber Accelerator is structured to:

  • Raise public awareness of the carbon,economic benefits, and beauty of mass timber construction.

  • Introduce more practitioners to the design and engineering practices and feasibility of mass timber construction.

  • Identify the potential for additional affordable housing creation, new development, new business and job creation opportunities, through the expansion of mass timber construction. 

  • Result in new buildings constructed with mass timber materials.

Led by the Boston Society for Architecture, the public and stakeholder process will be structured to engage local communities and stakeholders and provide multiple visibility platforms for best practice discussions, product presentations, study reports, and summary findings. Visit the BSA’s Mass Timber site for additional information and resources.

The Boston Mass Timber Accelerator program will competitively select up to ten active private development projects for funding and technical assistance. With the technical support of the WoodWorks team, the selected development teams will explore the benefits and assess the feasibility of incorporating mass timber structural building materials and practices into their building projects. 

The Boston Mass Timber Accelerator program has been made possible by the support and partnership of the USDA Forest Service, the Softwood Lumber Board, the ClimateWorks Foundation, and the Boston Society for Architecture. Program materials and application will be available on September 30, 2021. An information session will be held at 12 noon on October 19, 2021. Applications are due by November 19, 2021.

Stay Connected

If you are interested in participating in the discussion please sign up for our Neighborhood Email updates. If you have specific Mass Timber Accelerator or Zero Net Carbon Building Zoning questions please reach out to John Dalzell ([email protected]).

Header Photo Credit: Greg Folkins, courtesy WoodWorks

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