Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Requirements for Public Land Dispositions

The BPDA is strongly committed to ensuring that the disposition of publicly-owned properties provide opportunities for wealth-creation and workforce participation for businesses and individuals who have historically been underrepresented in real estate development.

Beginning in 2018, all Requests for Proposals (RFPs) for the redevelopment of BPDA-owned land require respondents to outline a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion plan. This measures the extent to which proposals plan to include significant economic participation and management roles by people of color, women, and M/WBEs in as many aspects of the project as possible. In 2020, the BPDA began weighing this criterion at 25% for all RFPs.

Since 2018, the BPDA released over 18 RFPs and designated 11 development projects. These include the Blair Lot, Parcel 8, and the Crescent Parcel in Nubian Square, 22 Drydock, 24 Drydock, and Parcel M in the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park, Parcel R-1 in Chinatown, and Building 108 in the Charlestown Navy Yard.

DEI Requirements included in RFPs

RFP Respondents must submit a Diversity and Inclusion Plan which reflects the extent to which they plan to include significant and impactful economic participation, employment, and management roles by people of color, women, certified Minority-Owned Businesses (“MBEs”), and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (“WBEs”) (collectively referred to as ‘M/WBEs”) on the project.

The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan should reflect economic participation and management roles by people of color, women, and M/WBEs in all phases of development, including but not limited to:

  • pre-development (development entity, ownership, equity and debt investment, design, engineering, legal, other consultants);
  • construction (general contractor, sub-contractor, trades, workers performing construction, suppliers, engineering and other professional services); and
  • ongoing operations ( building tenants, facilities management, contracted services.)

The Diversity and Inclusion Plan should include the following good faith measures relating to M/WBE participation:

  • Providing information as to the M/WBE-owned firms participating in the development, the nature of their participation in the particular phase(s) of the development, and the extent to which such M/WBE involvement is committed as of the date of proposal submission. Where possible proponents should include detailed information on the M/WBE role, responsibility and total contract value in the development.
  • The proponent’s strategy for supplier diversity and M/WBE outreach, including its goals and its good faith efforts the proponent may propose for M/WBE participation. Proposals should indicate what strategies will be pursued, or are being pursued, to identify M/WBE participation, including outreach and identification activities to timely inform the M/WBE community of upcoming opportunities.
  • Strategies which support sustainable capacity development in M/WBE firms, such as mentor-protégé relationships or joint ventures. These partnerships for capacity development should describe the impact of participating in this project on the M/WBE firm’s future business growth and opportunities.
  • The proponent’s strategy to support workforce training/capacity building for populations underrepresented in the construction trades as well as other fields of real estate development.
  • A description of the Development Team’s prior experience and track record undertaking similar programs at other locations including examples deployed on private property.

The Diversity and Inclusion Plan should discuss why it is specific, realistic, executable, and impactful. The Diversity and Inclusion Plan evaluation criterion shall comprise 25% of the BPDA’s comparative evaluation of each proposal submitted.

The Diversity and Inclusion Plan language incorporated into all public land disposition RFPs is located here.

22 Drydock Avenue rendering

22 Drydock Avenue

The proposed project at 22 Drydock Avenue will create new life sciences / research and development lab space in the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park. The selected developer is a joint venture partnership between Related Beal, Boston Real Estate Investment Fund (BREIF) and Kavanaugh Advisory Group. The plan is comprehensive, encompassing all phases of the development project – 45% of the overall team is comprised of M/WBE firms from across the real estate spectrum. Those teams include Dream Collaborative (MBE), GROUND, Inc. (WBE). Ryan, Biggs, Clark, Davis (MBE), Soden Sustainability (WBE), Ivy Wany Commissioning (W/MBE), Janey Construction (MBE), and Done Right Building Services (MBE). 100% of the team has committed to M/WBE participation in their respective specialties.

Specific details can be found at Related-BRIEF-Kavanaugh DEI Plan

Parcel R-1 rendering

Parcel R-1

The proposed project on Parcel R-1 in Chinatown will create new affordable housing, as well as a permanent Chinatown Boston Public Library branch. The selected developer for R-1 is Asian Community Development Corporation (“Asian CDC”), in a strategic alliance with a joint venture of Consigli Construction and Smoot Construction. They have put forth a comprehensive Diversity and Inclusion Plan which includes meaningful participation by M/WBEs in all areas of the project.

Asian CDC is a woman and Asian American Pacific Islander (“AAPI”) led business and Smoot Construction is an MBE. The design team is led by Stantec, with an AAPI woman as one of the lead architects, Michael Kim Associates (MBE led by an AAPI person), Architectural Associates (WBE), LIM Consultants (WBE and AAPI-led), Nitsch (WBE), Ground, Inc. (WBE); lighting consultant and energy modeling firm (both WBEs); project attorney (AAPI) and WBE property management company. In all, 30% of the construction costs and 33% of the soft costs on the project will be managed by M/WBEs, many of whom are members of the AAPI community with deep connections to Chinatown.

Additionally, Consigli / Smoot committed to exceeding the hiring requirements of the Boston Residents Jobs Policy (“BRJP”) and routinely engaging in proactive Diversity and Inclusion best practices including the creation of a tracking database of MWBE subcontractors, advertising and outreach targeting diverse subcontractors, breaking bids into smaller packages, requiring subcontractors to submit diversity and inclusion hiring plans when submitting bids, training programs geared to recruit more MWBE workers and working closely with the Massachusetts Minority Contractors Association (“MMCA”), among other things.

Maloney Properties will utilize proactive DEI practices in operations and management of property, including outreach, recruiting and training, as well as providing multilingual staff as appropriate, to buildings under management.

Crescent Parcel site plan

Crescent Parcel

The proposed project on the Crescent Parcel in Roxbury will focus on creating affordable housing, dedicated community space, and open space. The selected developer for the Crescent Parcel is Drexel Village LLC, a joint partnership between the Planning Office of Urban Affairs (POUA), a non-profit housing developer affiliated with the Archdiocese of Boston, and J. Garland Enterprises (JGE), a 100% MBE development and design company. The Proponent has assembled a uniquely diverse and experienced team with significant participation by M/WBE firms, as shown in the image below.

Graphic showing the Drexel Village development team

A core component of the Diversity & Inclusion Plan involves working with Janey Construction (MBE) to develop and implement a comprehensive outreach and recruitment plan well in advance of construction start. Janey Construction will also be responsible for monitoring subcontractor efforts to recruit and maintain the diversity goals of the construction workforce and M/WBE participation throughout the construction phase of the project.

Blair Lot rendering from the Harrison Avenue side

Blair Lot

The proposed project on the Blair Lot in Roxbury will transform Nubian Square into a cultural and economic hub, with space for affordable housing. The selected developer for the Blair Lot is Nubian Ascend Partners, LLC (“Nubian Ascend”), which is a development partnership between Nubian Square Development, Almiranta Capital, and Black-Market Development. Nubian Ascend is committed to maximizing the participation of minority and women owned businesses in all phases of the development and operations of the project. Nubian Square Development, Almiranta Capital, and Black-Market Development are all entities that are 100% minority controlled.

The Nubian Ascend project team includes project architects Stantec and Dream Collaborative (MBE), landscape architects Ground, Inc (WBE), and civil engineers VHB. Consigli will be the construction firm for the project and has committed to working with Nubian Ascend in identifying minority prime and second tier contractors to work on the project. Bevco and Associates (MWBE) will lead the project through the Article 80 process and will manage the interaction with community stakeholders in public meetings. McKenzie and Associates (MBE) will handle all legal, zoning and contract matters for the project and Finance Boston will be managing the applications for public funding and tax credit programs. Both firms will have goals and tracking requirements for M/WBE participation. Ongoing operations management will be handled by UHM Properties (MBE).

In addition, the project will be creating an investment vehicle that will allow local Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan residents to invest as Community Equity Partners for as little as $1,000.