On March 8, 2016, as part of its economic development speaker series, Bowditch & Dewey welcomed 50 professionals to its Boston office for a networking evening with Brian Golden, Director of the Boston Redevelopment Authority. As evidenced by the cranes all over Boston, development is booming in the City with 14 million square feet of projects underway. Mr. Golden discussed in depth the history of the BRA and his year-long, and nearly complete, evaluation of the BRA’s resources. He stressed the BRA’s role in shaping the future of Boston and focusing on smart development. The BRA is identifying build-ready parcels throughout Boston, including publicly owned land that could create more affordable housing.
During the Q&A session, Mr. Golden noted some current projects and the tools that the BRA has to address issues of gentrification, diversity, and housing prices. Mr. Golden also elaborated on Mayor Walsh’s announcement of four pilot programs designed by the Housing Innovation Lab to address the shortage of affordable housing for the City’s middle-class families. While discussing creative strategies that the BRA is using to tackle such problems, Mr. Golden illustrated the challenges involved these developments by reference to a project on land owned by the MBTA near TD Bank Garden that required 25 different funding sources.
Afterwards, Mr. Golden engaged in smaller group discussions with our guests about the BRA and development in Boston. Bowditch & Dewey is grateful to Mr. Golden for joining us and continuing the discussion on the economic opportunities and challenges facing the greater Boston region.