Thomas Grillo – Real Estate Editor – Boston Business Journal-
Joseph Fallon, the pioneering Hub developer who is turning waterfront parking lots into gleaming glass office towers, is getting closer to putting another shovel in the ground at Fan Pier with construction of a 12-story condominium building on Boston Harbor. Fallon talked with Boston Business Journal real estate editor Thomas Grillo following the launch of MassChallenge 2012 at his building, One Marina Park Drive.
TG: Give us an update on Fan Pier, the $3 billion district neighborhood spanning nine city blocks. Construction began last summer on two buildings totaling 1.1 million square feet of space for Vertex Pharmaceuticals. What’s next?
JF: We are in the process of selecting an architect for the residential waterfront parcel that will include 150 condominiums. It will take up to 10 months for the architects to complete their work. We hope to break ground in the spring of 2013.
TG: Are you worried that sales have been slow at the three of Boston’s large luxury condominium projects, 45 Province, The Clarendon and the W Hotel & Residences and that you may have difficulty selling 150 pricey condos?
JF: We are on the water. Every floor will have a phenomenal view. We like to say that every unit will have penthouse water views. There will not be a bad floor or a bad condo in that building. Those types of waterfront units do not exist today in Boston so we are excited about getting it launched.
TG: The last time we spoke, financing was a challenge. What has changed to allow this 12-story condo project to go forward?
JF: The success of this site in this area. It has proven to be solid and there’s lots of interest so we are comfortable right now on financing.
TG: We’re on the 14th floor of One Marina Park, your first building on Fan Pier. How much space is still available?
JF: We have seven vacant floors with about 29,000 square feet on each. But we have proposals from prospective tenants. We have seen an increase in activity over the past few months. People are still a little cautious about the commercial market, but tenants are starting to look for new space. We are doing a lot more presentations per month this year compared to last year.
TG: What kind of companies are looking?
JF: Financial and tech companies. Firms are recognizing this building and the Innovation District. There’s activity down here. People want to be here.