Millennium Partners – Millennium Place

Millennium Partners has built an enviable portfolio of expertise in the luxury residential development market, having done work in many major American cities since it was founded in 1991. According to Kathleen MacNeil, a principal with Millennium Partners’ Boston office, the company takes lessons learned from its various projects around the country to help it constantly reevaluate and bring in new ideas and ways of thinking.

“We don’t just build the same project over and over,” she says. “We’re always looking for the latest trends to be sure we understand what people want. We don’t just sell apartments; we sell a lifestyle. We constantly think about amenities to add and we are aware of the neighborhoods we’re in so we can foster change in urban areas for the better.”

Vast Experience

Around the country, Millennium Partners has developed more than 1,600 luxury condominiums, eight five-star hotels, an extended-stay luxury hotel, 1 million square feet of office space, 1.2 million square feet of retail space, 3,750 parking spaces, four Loews Cineplex theaters and five health clubs. Adding in the acquisition of six health clubs, Millennium Partners owns and operates a portfolio worth more than $4 billion.

Millennium’s bread and butter is an urban project in a top-tier city that has a 24/7 component to its lifestyle. Although the company doesn’t work exclusively in cities where it has worked previously, those areas tend to be its preference because they are where the company has previously established local partnerships.

“To some degree we have some partners we bring with us, such as architects and contractors and financial partners,” MacNeil says. “And we have our local arms, like Millennium Partners - Boston, that has expertise with local customs and the constituents in the city and its neighborhoods.”

MacNeil says the blending of the local team’s experience is a critical component because they understand the importance of getting to know abutters and dealing with them early and upfront about issues like traffic, shadows and wind.

On the Way Up

One project the company has been working on in Boston is Millennium Place, which has been on Millennium’s docket since 2003.

Millennium Place is a condominium located on the corner of Avery and Washington streets across from The Ritz-Carlton. A $220 million, 15-story residential tower, it will include 256 one-, two- and three-bedroom residences. The glass and brick tower will also include 9,700 square feet of retail space and include a 125-space underground parking garage.

Residences will range between $550,000 and $2.8 million. The company plans to begin marketing its residences this fall, and occupancy is scheduled for fall 2013. Located across from Boston’s Ritz Carlton Hotel and Tower – another Millennium project – Millennium Place is on a roughly one-acre site that was previously a parking lot. Partners on the project include Handel Architects LLP and Suffolk Construction.

Millennium is targeting a variety of buyers, from young professionals to empty nesters. Residences will feature open floor plans and large master bedrooms and bathrooms. The building will also include the Club Level, a resident-only club with hotel-like amenities that will host events and be an extension of the home. The Club Level includes a Sports Club/LA designed and operated fitness, wellness and spa facility offering Millennium Place residents state-of-the-art equipment, technology-enhanced on-demand access to professional fitness instruction and superb personalized wellness programming.

Construction of the building has had to account for the fact that it is an urban site surrounded by four streets. Millennium had to work closely with the city to relocate utility lines and work out traffic patterns for deliveries. The building features a flat plate concrete system with a composite façade that is brick laid into precast walls. The intent was to create a building that aesthetically bridged the gap between the modern Ritz-Carlton tower and historic Boston.

Millennium Place’s design includes rooftop gardens, green roofs and a large courtyard with a signature garden. Energy recovery units are on the roof so exhaust is collected and its heat recovered. Millennium is pursuing a LEED Silver rating for the project, and it includes low flow plumbing products. Millennium did study the possibility of installing solar panels on the roof, but determined it wasn’t feasible.

Getting through the façade installation is key to keeping the project moving on schedule, which is why Millennium is using a second shift operation for its brick precast panel installation.

“That will free up the site and the crane, ensuring that the trades aren’t all over each other,” MacNeil says. “We have to keep an eye on quality, because we move inside as the façade moves forward.”

Millennium already has plenty on its plate in Boston as it looks beyond the Millennium Place project. The company’s next project is Millennium Tower Boston, located just down the street in Downtown Crossing at the old Filene’s building at One Franklin.

“We have been active in improving this district, and we want to keep working on projects like these,” MacNeil says. “The good news for us is the fact that we have another project site already lined up to give us another chance to continue to be active in this neighborhood.”

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