The Metropolitan leveraged the experience of Asian Community Development Corporation (ACDC) in developing Oak Terrace to take on new challenges: the 5% owner-occupancy rate in Chinatown and the increasingly expensive cost of housing in Boston’s downtown core. The result is a mixed use 23 story high-rise containing 251 rental and homeownership units, 115 (or 46%) of which are affordable to low and moderate income families. ACDC successfully incorporated an extraordinary number of affordable units by capturing and capitalizing on the intrinsic value of the site’s desirable location in downtown Boston, access to a plethora of public transportation options, and existing diversity and density that allowed the market-rate condominiums to subsidize the affordable housing component.
ACDC partnered with for-profit developer Edward A. Fish Associates (EAFA) to complete development of The Metropolitan in 2004. The $89 million high-rise project includes 133 rental units ranging from $365 per month for the formerly homeless to luxury units renting at $2,600 per month. The 118 for-sale condominiums sold at prices affordable to families earning 80% of area median income to prices in excess of $1 million for the penthouse units, the first in the neighborhood. Additionally, the Metropolitan includes community space for residents and public use; street-level retail and commercial space; and two-levels of underground parking with 283 spaces. The building is home to four grassroots non-profit organizations:Asian Community Development Corporation, Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, Chinese Progressive Association, and Boston Asian: Youth Essential Services. The 23-story Metropolitan is the tallest affordable housing project in the country sponsored by a community development corporation. At 46% affordable and with over 40,000 square feet of community space for public use and agencies, The Metropolitan certainly reached new heights of community development.