Jack Kemp Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing Awards 2018 Winner: Harbor Place

Harbor Place Residences has transformed vacant, underutilized waterfront parcels into a development that provides workforce housing opportunities in a mixed-income, mixed-use environment. As a former industrial mill city, Haverhill is a so-called Gateway City that has been marked by decades of disinvestment.

As such, the City had been at a crossroads. Multiple local, regional and state planning efforts over the last 10 years have identified the downtown area of Haverhill as a key component to its successful revitalization. The development of Harbor Place is the culmination of these planning efforts to revitalize downtown waterfront sites and to create public access and use of the spectacular Merrimack River that had been hidden for decades.

Harbor Place was developed by Merrimack Street Ventures, a joint venture between two nonprofit organizations, the Planning Office for Urban Affairs, Inc., a foremost housing developer in the Northeast, and the Greater Haverhill Foundation (GHF). Together, they developed 80 units of affordable and mixed-income housing to serve six different income tiers; 65,500 square feet of office, educational/cultural and commercial space; a 145-car underground parking garage with a new Public Plaza built on top; and a grand new Boardwalk that brings residents to the Merrimack River.

Harbor Place Residences is located a half mile from the Haverhill Commuter Rail Station, with direct access to downtown Boston and the Amtrak’s Downeaster line, in a walkable historic district that is home to restaurants and small businesses, situated on the north bank of the Merrimack River. The development has opened public access to the Merrimack River for the first time in over 80 years by removing the visual and access barriers. It has reinvigorated the larger downtown area of Haverhill.

Location: Haverhill, MA
Merrimack Street Ventures: Planning Office for Urban Affairs & Greater Haverhill Foundation
Harbor Place at Riverfront LLC; Harbor Place at Merrimack LLC

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