« Back to News & Blog

Construction Completed on Acre Crossing in Lowell

Mark S. Cochran, President and Chief Executive Officer at Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union cuts the ceremonial ribbon with community leaders at the grand opening of Acre Crossing on June 26, 2024.

Construction Completed on Acre Crossing in Lowell, Which Includes 32 New Homes for Purchase by Moderate-Income, First-Time Homebuyers, and a New Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union Office Building on a Redeveloped Parcel in Lowell’s Acre Neighborhood

LOWELL, MA (June 27, 2024) – A ribbon was cut today to mark the completion of Acre Crossing in Lowell, where a parcel in the city’s Acre neighborhood was redeveloped into 32 new homes for sale to first-time, moderate-income homebuyers, and a new five-story office building for Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union (JDCU).

“Today marks a significant milestone in our ongoing efforts to support our residents. Acre Crossing exemplifies the power of partnerships and community investment and is a testament to our commitment to ensuring that Lowell remains a place where everyone has the opportunity to thrive,” said Lowell City Manager Thomas A. Golden, Jr.

“MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder Program, the City of Lowell’s support, and Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union’s commitment to the Acre neighborhood made it possible for the Acre Crossing team to undertake this mixed-use development. This public private partnership was integral to our efforts to create affordable homeownership, commercial, office and onsite parking. Their collaboration is a prime example of how the public and private sector can achieve community and economic development goals. The Acre Crossing team is proud to have redeveloped this location into something new and positive for the Acre neighborhood and the city of Lowell. There’s a lot of history at this location, and now there’s a bright future as well,” said Will Soucy of Acre Crossing LLC.

The five-story brick Acre Crossing Residences at 650 Merrimack St., has 24 two-bedroom homes and eight three-bedroom homes with first-floor commercial space. The new homes were developed through MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder Program, which provided $8 million in funding. Other funding sources included $14 million in construction loan financing from Enterprise Bank and $763,000 in Community Preservation Act funding from the City of Lowell.

“We are excited for the 32 households who are buying their first home and putting down roots in the Acre neighborhood,” said MassHousing CEO Chrystal Kornegay. “MassHousing was pleased to be part of this transformative effort through the Agency’s CommonWealth Builder Program to revitalize this part of Merrimack Street into new housing for first-time homebuyers alongside the new commercial building.”

The new Jeanne D’Arc office building at 626 Merrimack St. also has 160 parking spaces in a two-level structure, with the lower-level underground. The 112-year-old JDCU formed in the Acre neighborhood and the new building is the credit union’s third in the neighborhood.

“This partnership has allowed Jeanne D’Arc to expand our presence in The Acre Neighborhood, showing our continued commitment to our community,” said Mark S. Cochran, President and Chief Executive Officer at Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union. “It’s even more meaningful that our newest building takes us back to the location of our first branch in Lowell where we started more than 100 years ago.”

Acre Crossing LLC partnered with the Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership (MVHP) to bring the new affordable homes to the neighborhood and market them to first-time homebuyers with household incomes up to 100 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). The AMI for Lowell is $132,900 for a household of four.

“We are honored and excited to be a small part of the development in the Acre neighborhood. This area of Lowell has been known for rental and public housing. However, with the vision of the developers, Acre Crossing, in collaboration with JDCU, the City of Lowell, and the MassHousing Commonwealth Builder Program, we are thrilled to be able to help our first-time homebuyers purchase a beautiful home to call their own,” said MVHP Executive Director Cathy Mercado. “Acre Crossing is available for first-time home buyers in the City of Lowell. It is a giant step forward in making the dream of homeownership a reality for the people of Lowell and the greater Merrimack Valley.”

The general contractor for Acre Crossing was Acre Crossing LLC, the architect was Stephen Chung Architect and KOAL, PLLC Architecture, and the management agent is Linear Property Management.

MassHousing’s CommonWealth Builder Program is a landmark initiative to address the racial homeownership gap in Massachusetts by creating new homeownership and wealth-building opportunities in underserved communities. It is the largest state-level program of its kind in the nation and provides market-based subsidies to support the construction of new, moderately priced, single-family homes and condominiums in the City of Boston, the state’s 26 Gateway Cities, and Framingham and Randolph.

The program subsidizes the production of homes restricted to homebuyers with incomes set anywhere between 70 percent to 120 percent of their Area Median Income. Since the program launched in 2019, MassHousing has committed a total of $106.2 million to 22 CommonWealth Builder projects across Massachusetts. These projects will create a total of 564 new homeownership opportunities. The program is funded by state capital funds and American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding allocated by the Massachusetts Legislature.

 

About Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union:

Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union was established in 1912 and is a full-service, community-based financial cooperative. Locally owned by 101,000 members with $2.1 billion in assets, Jeanne D’Arc operates eight full-service branches in Lowell, Dracut (2), Tyngsboro, Chelmsford, Methuen, and Westford, Massachusetts, and Nashua, New Hampshire; high-school branches at Lowell High, Dracut High, and Nashua High School South; a loan center in Lowell; and a mortgage center in Chelmsford. Follow Jeanne D’Arc on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

About MassHousing:

MassHousing (The Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency) is an independent, quasi-public agency created in 1966 and charged with providing financing for affordable housing in Massachusetts. The Agency raises capital by selling bonds and lends the proceeds to low- and moderate-income homebuyers and homeowners, and to developers who build or preserve affordable and/or mixed-income rental housing. MassHousing does not use taxpayer dollars to sustain its operations, although it administers some publicly funded programs on behalf of the Commonwealth. Since its inception, MassHousing has provided approximately $29 billion for affordable housing. For more information, follow MassHousing on TwitterFacebookInstagram and LinkedIn.

About Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership:

The Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership was founded in 1986 by The Ethnic Covenant. During its early years, MVHP worked as a developer of housing for low- and moderate-income earners. Three condominium complexes were built in Lowell and Lawrence. In 1991, MVHP shifted its focus and became a pioneer in the emerging field of homeownership education. A comprehensive series of homebuyer training seminars was created and named Project Genesis. Each seminar series consists of nine hours of instruction and is conducted over three evening sessions. More than 20,000 families have completed the Project Genesis home buyer training program so far. Classes begin every month and are offered in English, Spanish and Khmer. In addition to the classes, we offer individual financial and credit counseling. These sessions are enormously helpful in determining one’s readiness to buy. These sessions are also helpful in addressing credit issues as well as learning about various mortgage options. We conduct monthly Landlord Training seminars for those interested in purchasing multifamily properties. MVHP also provides administrative and technical support for down payment assistance programs for first-time home buyers, including managing the City of Lowell’s DPA program. Additionally, MVHP is an affordable lottery agency and is a Local Rehabilitation Agency for MassHousing’s Get the Lead Out lead paint removal program. For more information, please visit www.mvhp.org.

 

Photo cutline: Mark S. Cochran, President and Chief Executive Officer at Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union (center left) cuts the ceremonial ribbon with community leaders at the grand opening of Acre Crossing on June 26, 2024.