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This is the website for the City of Boston’s new Planning Department, which launched on July 1. The staff and many responsibilities of the Boston Planning & Development Agency have moved to the Planning Department of the City of Boston including planning & zoning, urban design, development review, and real estate divisions. Please excuse any misalignment you may see on our site as we transition to the City. Learn more

News & Updates

Boston: The Most Innovative City in the World

Jan 12, 2012

  • According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Boston’s population grew 4.8% in the last decade, the highest in the nation.  Our population has reached 617,594 residents, and one in three Bostonians is between the ages of 20 and 34, making it the youngest city in the country.
  • In 2011, the Mayor's top development initiatives were the revitalization of Dudley Square, the heart of Boston, and working to realize the potential of Boston's gem, the Harbor.
Dudley Square and Boston’s Waterfront in 2011
  • The development of Dudley Square continues:
    • The $115 million Ferdinand Furniture Building project will unite three buildings to comprehensively redevelop the block.  The project is scheduled to break ground in 2012.
    • The developer of Parcels 9 & 10 will be announced in early 2012 creating an important opportunity to stimulate development that will improve physical, economic, and social conditions in Roxbury.
    • The oldest fire house in the city reopened as the newly restored LEED Silver Eustis Street Firehouse after a $2.5 million rehabilitation.
    • The B2 Police Station received the 2011 Nicholas Humber Environmental Award for Outstanding Collaboration from the Environmental Business Council of New England.
  • The comprehensive development of Boston’s waterfront: East Boston and the Innovation District
    • The East Boston Waterfront Development District and the East Boston Marine Terminal will create a network in Boston’s waterfront.
      • 9 currently pending projects represent over $500 million
      • 2.5 million square feet of new space
      • 1,800 housing units
      • 1,400 construction jobs and 300 permanent jobs
  • Vertex Pharmaceuticals broke ground on its 1.1 M SF headquarters. The $800 million project makes it the largest privately funded construction site in the nation, and the largest commercial lease in Boston's history.
  • Over 90 new businesses and over 2,800 jobs have made the District home since January 2010.
  • Babson College, the nation’s #1 school for entrepreneurs, opened a campus.
  • MassChallenge graduated its second class of 125 startups.  Over 700 startups applied from 24 countries and 34 states.  Last year’s class raised $90 million and created 500 jobs in just one year!
  • Fraunhofer is moving forward with retrofitting the 100 year old industrial warehouse building in Channel Center into the state-of-the-art Building Technology Showcase.  The Showcase will be a living laboratory, clean tech incubator, and the international research institution's headquarters.
  • The BRA Board approved a 10 year lease to create Headquarters Boston, a new creative co-working space to begin in January 2012, hosted by Geekhouse Bikes.
  • Tentative Designation was also given to the American Seafood Exchange to build a $68.9 million seafood processing and distribution center in the Boston Marine Industrial Park.
  • Boston's newest collection of restaurants, Liberty Wharf, opened to incredible success with Del Frisco’s Steak House, Jerry Remy’s, the flagship Legal Harborside, and Temazcal Tequila Cantina.
Awards and Announcements:
  • Mayor Menino gave his annual address to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce announcing a new vision for Boston’s waterfronts, including jumpstarting development in East Boston and establishing new water transit options, during his annual address to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce.
  • In May, the BRA celebrated the arrival of its new director, Peter Meade.  Director Meade shared Boston's story at the International BIO Convention in Washington, DC, at the International Council of Shopping Centers in Las Vegas, and the National League of Cities in Phoenix, Arizona.  Boston will host the 2012 International BIO Convention, the world's largest biotechnology meeting, and the 2012 National League of Cities Conference.  Director Meade began his fall speaking tour by sharing the BRA’s plans for job creation and strengthening Boston’s economy at his presentation to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce.  Director Meade continued his fall speaking tour to nearly 30 groups and hundreds of people.

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