City receives state grants for Broadway projects

The city received some good news in its efforts to revitalize Broadway and the downtown.

Chelsea was recently notified that it is receiving a $4 million grant from the state’s MassWorks Infrastructure Program to help finance a major infrastructure program on Broadway from City Hall to Williams Street, according to Alexander Train, the city’s housing and community development director.

The money will help upgrade water, sewer, drainage, and fiber optics infrastructure along the important stretch of Broadway, and will dovetail with the $5 million the City Council has previously appropriated for the reconstruction of the street.

“It will improve water and sewer services for the business owners and residents on Broadway,” said Train. “Up to this point, due to inflation and rising costs, it has been a challenge to find funding for the project.”

Train thanked Governor Charlie Baker and his administration for working with the city to help secure the funding through the grant and taking the project one step closer to being a reality.

“Chelsea City Council appropriated $5 million in construction funding for this project, demonstrating the City’s commitment to infrastructure modernization in the downtown,” said Train. “This funding, combined with MassWorks and other sources, will allow the City to realize this project.”

Currently, Train said the plan is to finish the design of the project and put it out to bid in the winter of 2023 with a construction start date in early 2024.

The city was also recently awarded a $100,000 grant from the MassDevelopment Underutilized Properties Program to help advance design and architectural plans for the conversion of the former Salvation Army building at 440 Broadway into a mixed-use development with 28 affordable housing units and retail space on the first floor.

The project is being developed by the Traggorth Company and will feature retail space on the first floor. That space will be used by the non-profit Hispanic American Institute to develop small retail food areas where local businesses can sell their projects.

Train said the project serves a number of needs, including the city’s commitment to providing more affordable housing, and creating a space for small, local businesses.

Train also noted that the retail space will work well in conjunction with teaching kitchens currently being proposed by nonprofits such as La Colaborativa and GreenRoots.

The groundbreaking for the 440 Broadway project could take place by the end of 2023, Train said.

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