Worcester Redevelopment Effort
Despite having spent most of my life in central Massachusetts, I always thought that Worcester was one of the worst places to go. I viewed it as a run down, shrinking and lifeless city where nobody would want to live. To my own defense, for most of my life Worcester really did not have a lot to offer. It's train station served no trains, it's mall had more rats than stores and despite being the second largest city in New England, it was difficult to access from almost any highway.
Fast forward 20 years. From the time I was born in the early 90's until now, Worcester has begun to make a dramatic turnaround. Some major steps: trains now use the train station, JetBlue is operating at the airport, the horrible empty mall has been torn down and the city now connects to another highway. If you are not from around here, you may read these things and think "what's so exciting about that?" Let me tell you, it's exciting because nobody ever expected it to happen in a city that was once so bleak.
Over the next three to five years I expect the city to continue it's transformation, moving from it's current shall I say average status to an ideal place for young people. But why you ask? A project called CitySquare is planning to revitalize all of downtown Worcester. By the way, its going to cost over 500 million dollars... But it's going to turn this
In all reality, the city is tearing down the decades empty mall to build a mixed use and pedestrian friendly development area. At first, I did not believe it would happen, but many buildings have actually been completed. So far, the hospital downtown has opened a state of the art cancer facility and a brand new huge office building has gone up for Unum.
Looking towards the future, the city has plans to continue this buildout over the next 8 or so years and fully demolish and rebuild about 12 acres worth of land, which explains the high price tag. Even outside of the immediate downtown area, Worcester continues to build many new buildings and employment prospects are looking bright, particularly in the health sciences field.
I really hope that my predictions are accurate and that CitySquare continues with it's great progress, because this will make Worcester a really great place to live.
If you want to learn more about Worcester, check out some of my other articles about the city!
As of December 2014, Worcester has officially planned to open two new hotels and build 400 apartments as the next phase of CitySquare!