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May 5, 2022

Site of Mount Carmel Church sold for $5.6M, construction on housing complex to begin

Rendering | Courtesy of WP East Acquisitions, LLC A rendering of the proposed Alta Seven Hills apartment complex, which is slated for the former site of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Worcester

The 5.3-acre property of the former Lady of Mount Carmel Church on Mulberry Street in Worcester sold Wednesday for $5.6 million, Drew Higgins of Kelleher & Sadowsky Associate, Inc. in Worcester confirmed Thursday.

The sale is the culmination of a five-year effort which required Vatican approval, said Higgins, who represented the seller in the transaction with Kelleher & Sadowsky President Jim Umphrey. In 2016, Bishop James McManus closed the church due to safety concerns and efforts to sell the property began the following year. In 2019, the church was demolished.

The buyer in Wednesday’s transaction was Wood Partners, a Georgia-based developer with offices in Lexington. Wood Partners announced plans in 2021 to develop the site into a five-story, 370-unit apartment complex at the site. 

Construction is due to start on May 16 if all goes as planned, said Jim Lambert, managing director at Wood Partners’ Boston-area office. All of the proposed units will be market-rate, he said.

The Catholic Free Press first reported the news of the sale.

Higgins likened the project to 145 Front at City Square, a 365-unit complex in downtown Worcester completed in 2018.

In July, the Worcester City Council considered a proposed tax increment exemption plan for the Alta on the Row complex that would cut the project’s taxes by $10 million. The proposal was deferred to the Economic Development Committee. At that council meeting, Chief Development Officer Peter Dunn said the base value for the property is $5.6 million, with an estimated value of $103.3 million after construction is complete.

In total, 22-28 Mulberry St. is assessed by the City of Worcester at about $3.7 million, according to the assessors’ database. 

The church was sold by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Worcester. Spanning from 22-28 Mulberry St., the sold property includes the Joe DiMaggio Little League Field, which will relocate to Cristoforo Colombo Park on Shrewsbury Street, according to a report from the Catholic Free Press.

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