FRAMINGHAM, MA - The historic Bancroft building, which dates back to the early 1900s, has been preserved and given a new purpose by Washington Square Ventures, which has transformed the former factory into 258 apartment homes that are professionally managed by Greystar. The project was awarded a 2023 Preservation Massachusetts Mayor Thomas M. Menino Legacy Award, which recognizes excellence in historic preservation statewide.
The Lofts building is an old mill building that has served as a car manufacturing plant as well as other crated goods throughout the 20th century and was previously home to artists at the Fountain Street Gallery. Some of the industrial components, like raised beams and factory-style windows, have been restored and remain in the Loft building.
"The Bancroft Building is a key piece of Framingham's economic history, having served several purposes throughout its life, and we wanted to make sure it endured for another purpose," said Matt Faris, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Washington Square Ventures. "It began its life as a shoe factory, served as a military supply factory as Bancroft Cap Company, and even saw Bay State Autos manufacture automobiles."
A brand-new building on the property, The Vista, is a ground-up traditional apartment building and features sweeping views of Farm Pond, while the site's former power station has been transformed into a 4,500 sq. ft. amenities hub highlighted by a resort-style swimming pool, lounge with TVs, fire pits and turf, outdoor grilling stations, and a top-notch fitness center inside. Washington Square Ventures is also working on a second phase of Bancroft Lofts with an expansion that would add 300 more apartment homes to the community.
Washington Square Ventures spent the time lovingly restoring the Bancroft Building, using sustainable building practices, and now Bancroft Lofts is a great example of Framingham's reinvention. The vibrant downtown is close to transit, restaurants, many with Brazilian cuisine, and local businesses like Jack's Abby Craft Lagers, a local favorite and official beer of the Boston Celtics. Bancroft Lofts partnered with Jack's Abby to design a special pint glass used as a move-in gift for residents.