I have been staring longingly down Shawmut Avenue for nearly a year now, wondering who that new kid on the block was. My path crosses his on my way to work each morning, and I can’t help but be struck by the shear sexiness of his exterior. It’s magnetic, I’m mesmerized by the solidity of its foundation and the sleekness of its glass expansion, which rises up above the treetops, creating a green leafy carpet – for those in the Penthouse units – to gaze down upon.
Interior Renderings: Clean lines – great views.
Located at 136 Shawmut Avenue in Boston’s South End, the name The Lucas is fitting as the property, which was constructed in 1874 – originally designed by Patrick Keely – was a Catholic Church, the Old Holy Trinity German Catholic Church to be specific, and Saint Lucas is the patron saint of artists, students, physicians, and….butchers. Butchers aside, the South End, with its proximity to Tufts Medical, and Boston City Hospital, to NU, Tufts Dental, Suffolk University, Fisher College, and to a rich design community and the artists that populate the SOWA (South of Washington Street) Market – Luke landed just where he is perhaps most needed. Certainly, I appreciate the its presence.
Left: Old Rectory Right: Original Church
This 33 unit luxury condo complex which is being developed by New Boston Ventures, A South End Residential Developer responsible for other SE properties including; Zero Worcester Square, The Royal – also located on Shawmut Ave., and 38 Upton in the Eight Streets District where I reside. Designed by Finegold Alexander, and built by Metric, it includes 1, 2, and 3 bedrooms, ranging from $1.1M – $4M. Now that only tells a small part of the story. According to Ellen Anzelone of Finegold Alexander, 60% of the units were sold reconstruction, and the remainder after the construction began. In other words – you’ll have to wait to get in there until someone moves on -this life or afterlife, they won’t go easily. Word is they have some pretty high-profile tenants. I’d stalk it if I were you.
I love old churches with their beautiful windows, their spires and detailing designed to pay homage to a higher power, but if truth be told, they don’t lend themselves terribly well to a formulaic apartment layout which demands economy of configuration to make the numbers work. That’s not to say people wouldn’t buy it, but in Lucas’ case – it’s perfectly proportioned. These numbers seem to work. New Boston Ventures purchased the church from the Archdiocese for $7M – good deal. They invested roughly $47M in its design and construction, and a blended rate of the units per square foot nets out at roughly $1836. a foot. Somewhere north of $90M profit doesn’t seem to bad.
Parking for 16 cars means only the most expensive units will have spots included with their sale. The building has a gym, common courtyard, and library. It’s also a short one block walk to Whole Foods. All the modern amenities inside one of the most heavenly building envelops the South End has seen in decades. Amen to that.
Engineered wood floors, custom cabinets, marble, and extra large subway tile with pale gray grout. Just a hint of style without going too far.
If you’re feeling absolutely beside yourself that yet again you missed out on a great mate, don’t lose heart….I hear one of them is going to flip immediately. Let the games begin.