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City announces request for proposals for Bruce C. Bolling building

The City released a request for proposals to operate and activate the 7,800 square foot street-level space.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced the City of Boston has released a request for proposals (RFP) to operate and activate the 7,800 square foot street-level space in the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building in Dudley Square. The RFP calls for an operator for the space, suitable to accommodate a wide range of businesses including a restaurant, a major performance space, or a meeting space, that will meet the demand for retail in the area, will enhance the community with a dynamic storefront, and activate Dudley Square with news ideas for family-friendly entertainment and initiatives.

"The Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building represents Dudley Square's historic commercial and community center, and we look forward to welcoming a new partner who will continue the innovative spirit of the building," said Mayor Walsh. "I look forward to an imaginative and ambitious proposal that will expand opportunities for residents, benefit the Dudley Square community, and bring together Roxbury and surrounding neighborhoods."

Located in the heart of Dudley Square, the historic, mixed-use Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building is the headquarters of Boston Public Schools, uniting 500 administrative staff and attracting visitors for public meetings and hearings throughout the year. The Bolling Building is also home to the Roxbury Innovation Center, public meeting and engagement spaces, and approximately 10,000 square feet of leased tenant space at the street level, bringing needed private sector retail and evening restaurant offerings to Dudley Square. The ground-level space on the north front of the building is currently considered a core and shell space, allowing proposed tenants to customize the space to their unique plan for activation.

"As a bustling center for daily transit, retail, and community activity, this new tenant will be woven into the fabric of Dudley Square and serve as a crucial stakeholder in its continued revitalization," said John F. Barros, Chief of Economic Development. "As the greater Roxbury community continues to attract new commercial, residential, and mixed-use development, additional retail and entertainment opportunities will bring provide local employment opportunities, community programming, and showcase the neighborhood's unique identity."

Located in the geographic center of Boston, Dudley Square contains over 150 businesses, representing retail demand by neighborhood residents of more than $610 million annually. The square is anchored by the Commonwealth's most heavily trafficked MBTA bus station, serving 35,000 people a day. Recent revitalization efforts by the City, including the renovation of the Dudley Branch Library, have served as a catalyst for private development in the greater Roxbury area. Development projects underway or in review include the over 300,000 square foot mixed-use Guscott Rio Grande building at 2343-2345 Washington Street; the mixed-use Tremont Crossing, which includes over 288,000 square feet of destination retail, 116,000 square feet of neighborhood retail, and the 31,000 square foot NCAAA Museum and Exhibition Space; and, the Melnea Hotel and Residences, a 135 room hotel and residential apartment building with 8,000 square feet of retail space permitted.

The future of Dudley Square is currently being envisioned through PLAN: Dudley Square, a community plan exploring the development program of publicly owned parcels, which builds upon the Roxbury Strategic Master PlanImagine Boston 2030, the first city-wide planning process in 50 years, identified the Bolling Building as a model public-private partnership that should be replicated in other growth areas of the City.

More information about the RFP is available here. RFPs can be accessed on the supplier portal, Event ID EV00004540 (compatible with Internet Explorer). A Proposers' Conference to answer any questions will be held Tuesday, August 15, 2017 at 2:00 p.m, at the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building, located at 2300 Washington Street, Roxbury. Guided tours of the building will follow. Responses will be due no later than 3:00 p.m. on September 27, 2017.

About the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building

The Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building opened on April 27, 2015, and incorporates the Ferdinand Furniture Building, the Curtis Block and the Waterman & Sons building, into a new state of the art facility. The six-story building houses an estimated 500 municipal employees from Boston Public Schools and features office space, as well as open space for student work, school events, and community gatherings. The building also includes 18,000 square feet of street-level space, and the 3,350 square foot Roxbury Innovation Center. The Building is a 2017 Silver medalist for the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence.

The City of Boston's $115 million investment in the Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building has spurred private investment across Dudley Square. The building is a collaboration between the City of Boston's Property and Construction Management Department, and the Boston Planning and Development Agency working closely with the community and historic preservationists. The Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building was designed by Mecanoo architecten and Sasaki Associates. Shawmut Design and Construction served as the CM at-Risk contractor, with project management services being handled by PMA Consultants.

About the Mayor's Office of Economic Development

The Economic Development Cabinet's mission is to make Boston an appealing and accessible place for working families, entrepreneurs, businesses, and investors to innovate, grow, and thrive in a way that fosters inclusion, broadens opportunity, and shares prosperity, thereby enhancing the quality of life for all Bostonians and the experience for all visitors. Learn more on the Economic Development website.

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