Current view of Baron Lofts (September 2012) Location of the former Baron Brothers Furniture store in downtown Taunton. View of second floor unit. BARON LOFTS (click to see current design)
Baron Brother Lofts: 6 unit mixed-income rental development and Art Gallery, Taunton, MA: The Neighborhood Corporation most recent endeavor in downtown Taunton is the Baron Lofts, containing 6 mixed-income rental units, art gallery, office space, urban plaza and off street parking. The Neighborhood Corporation (TNC) in partnership with Taunton Business Improvement District (BID) has targeted the downtown area, specifically, vacant blighted buildings that will directly impact the revitalization of the core of the city of Taunton. Prior to the acquisition in December 2011, the Baron Brother Furniture building, located at 8 Trescott Street, had been vacant and boarded up since 2005 and the adjacent lot on 32 Main Street, has been blighted and overgrown with vegetation since a fire destroyed the building in the late 1990s. The Baron Lofts is the first private investment of new mixed-used development in many years and is seen as a catalyst to the long-term revitalization of downtown Taunton. The residential component consists of a mix of affordable and market rate units which are providing much needed “work force” housing to the downtown area. The project consists of the creation of 5 one-bedroom urban loft-style apartments on the second floor and 1 one-bedroom handicap accessible unit on the first floor. The commercial space on the first floor hosts the downtown’s first art gallery and studio space and the balance consisting of office space. The project is a keystone for the long term vision of “work force” housing and the creative economy movement the City of Taunton. The investment in the project is in excess of $1.5 million.
Funding for Baron Lofts was through a combination of funding from conventional bank financing thru Bristol County Saving Bank, Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) funds thru Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation (MHIC) and Taunton/Attleboro HOME Consortium funding. Malloch Construction and Clearwater Architects are members of the development team working with TNC and the BID on the project. The construction of the Baron Lofts was completed in September 2012 with residential and commercial occupancy in October 2012.