In 2019 Harvard University announced a competition to select a partner to develop an innovative 14-acre Enterprise Research Campus ("ERC") in Allston, Massachusetts, a neighborhood of Boston. We knew there was an ambitious challenge ahead. We had a bold vision for the ERC. Harvard also needed a trusted partner who could work closely with them, and who passionately believed in their values. In December of 2019, Harvard selected Tishman Speyer, and we began our partnership to develop a multifaceted diverse and inclusive neighborhood. This includes approximately 2 million square feet of life science laboratories, multi-family apartments including affordable units, a hotel, a conference center, and an innovative mix of retail and active ground floor programming along new open space.
Our design principles focus on sustainability and green spaces that are open to all. We were inspired by Boston’s legacy of interconnected open space. At the center of the ERC well be new open space that serves as a platform for programming and human connection. The buildings and open spaces are configured to account for environmental considerations such as solar access and wind protection to increase pedestrian comfort and make it possible to enjoy more of the spring and fall outdoors. Our design prioritizes a safe, clean, healthy place with a focus on community, connectivity and accessibility.
Creating access and opportunity for minorities was of utmost importance to both Tishman Speyer and Harvard from the earliest stages of the project. The ERC will take major steps to advance our diversity, equity and inclusion goals – both at the project level and within the real estate industry. We have raised over $30 million of equity from more than 150 Black and Latinx investors. This is the largest inclusionary investor initiative (total dollars) for private development in the history of Boston. By incorporating diverse capital into the ERC we intend to provide true economic inclusion and wealth generating opportunities in communities of color.
We are also creating new opportunities for increased participation of minority and women owned enterprises (“MBE/WBE”) in the ERC’s development. We have already awarded more than 30% of the value of the project’s preconstruction costs to MBE/WBEs. We have also committed to awarding at least 15% of construction costs to MBE/WBEs. Doing so will provide these firms with the experience to compete for large, complex projects in the future. And, when we open the project, we will curate a dynamic ground floor experience with the small, local, minority and women-owned retailers who bring our communities to life.
Tishman Speyer Rockefeller Center 45 Rockefeller Plaza New York, NY 10111 USAMeet the Team
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