BRISTOL - City officials and developers broke ground on two historic-Bristol buildings Wednesday morning that are being transformed into nearly 100 units of senior housing and taxable entities.
Members of Bristol Enterprises LLC, and joint partners Lazarus’s development group, Park Lane Group and Maynard Road Corp., met with Mayor Ken Cockayne and members of the Bristol Development Authority outside the former Clarence A. Bingham School to announce the groundbreaking development of that building and the former Clara T. O’Connell School.
Bingham School is located at 3 North St. and has been unused for about seven years. O’Connell is located at 120 Park St. and closed about five years ago. In 2015, both were sold to Connecticut-based developer, Bristol Enterprises for $219,000, and now are being developed into market-rate senior housing.
“This renovation is a fantastic initiative that meets growing market demand, introduces the properties to the tax rolls for the first time in the city’s history and preserves two historic properties that might otherwise have been demolished,” said Cockayne. He added Bristol Enterprises to be commended for the work.
Principal partner in Bristol Enterprises, Ted Lazarus, said, “I expect that many of our future residents will have attended these schools as children and we are pleased to be participating in a project that will provide much needed housing for growing numbers of seniors in the area.”
The Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation recently announced the two schools were added to the National Register. This status allows the project to qualify for historic rehabilitation tax credits because they are being redeveloped into housing.
Tim Sullivan, deputy commission at the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development said the project is part of a portfolio of more than $200 million, referring to the state’s Brownfield Programs that provides grants to municipalities and low-interest loans to private developer to develop properties across the state. He praised the projects ability to keep memories in the building by repurposing the building.
The designs reflect contemporary efforts to provide natural light, ventilation, fire safety and facilities for current senior educational needs. Lazarus intends to incorporate the latest geothermal and solar energy technologies so both buildings can produce their own energy needs for heating, cooling and electricity.
“We are proud to contribute to the City of Bristol in a small way,” Rob Cappelletti of Maynard Road Corp. said. Cappelletti noted the abatements of the buildings are almost done; the project should take about 18 months and then three or four months to lease them out.
Lorenzo Burgio can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 860-584-0501 x5088.