Commonwealth Sells New Bedford Property to Cruz Development Corporation for Housing Redevelopment

John B. Cruz III; Photo: © 2015 Eric Haynes

NEW BEDFORD, MA—The Healey-Driscoll administration announced that the state closed on the sale of a 1.417-acre parcel in New Bedford to Cruz Development Corporation, enabling the transformation of this previously state-owned property into housing.

Cruz Development Corporation, a third-generation family business and Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), plans to develop the property, located at 593 Kempton Street, into 28 mixed-income rental units — 70 percent affordable and 30 percent market rate — an outdoor play area, and parking. 

“593 Kempton Street represents just one of many state-owned properties that we can utilize for housing,” said Governor Maura Healey. “This is a critical means of meeting our goals of increasing housing production across the state and lowering costs. That’s why I’ve directed our administration to identify other sites across the state that could be used for this purpose as well.” 

“Abundant and affordable housing in every community is the key to a bright future for Massachusetts,” said Lt. Governor Kim Driscoll. “The sale of 593 Kempton Street exemplifies our administration’s commitment to marshalling our resources to create and identify housing for families across the Commonwealth.” 

“The 593 Kempton Street property will now have a new useful life as part of the solution to Massachusetts’ housing crisis,” said Administration and Finance Secretary Matthew J. Gorzkowicz. “Today’s closing marks an important milestone in our mission to boost housing supply by utilizing state-owned properties.” 

In 2021, the Commonwealth’s Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM) identified this underutilized property, previously the St. Mary’s Home for Children, as a redevelopment opportunity to address housing needs in the heart of New Bedford. Following a competitive Request for Proposals process led by DCAMM, Cruz Development Corporation was selected for provisional designation on July 2, 2021. 

“Meeting the moment of our housing crisis requires a resourceful approach and collaboration with trusted, experienced developers such as the Cruz Development Corporation,” said DCAMM Commissioner Carol Gladstone. “We look forward to the completion of the Cruz team’s visionary redevelopment of this property—and we are pleased to continue supporting New Bedford’s resurgence as a vibrant community and as an important Gateway City.”   

“We applaud the state’s drive for better and more affordable housing opportunities in Gateway Cities like New Bedford, and we thank DCAMM for their collaboration,” said Cruz Development Corporation President and CEO John B. Cruz III. “Our opportunity to reimagine several historic sites in this community, including the former school at 593 Kempton Street, reflects our longevity and commitment to the area—and will help bring 80-plus new units of affordable housing in total across this site and others.”