Here’s to a new Millennium in Downtown Crossing

Millennium Place welcomes its first residents next month.

This fall, Downtown Crossing continues its transformation from mostly seedy retail mecca to upscale neighborhood with two mixed-use projects on Washington Street — one completed and one just begun — that bring a dramatic change to the area along the lines of when the city-sanctioned red light district known as the Combat Zone took over in the early 1960s.

Those projects — Millennium Place, which welcomes its first residents in early October, and the nearby Millennium Tower-Burnham Building, which started preliminary work this spring — will add new retail and office space and also bring over 700 homes to the area. The homes start at $750,000 for almost 800 square feet and will sell for as high as multiple millions.

“There’s no question about it, it’s a huge change,” says Richard G. Baumert, partner at Millennium Partners, which also developed the nearby Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Towers and the Sports Club/LA on adjacent Avery Street. “It’s very similar to when we did the Ritz project in 2001, how that initiated a huge change in what was a rundown, forgotten area.”

To some, this furthers Downtown Crossing’s gentrification into a “one percenter” playground. However, the beautiful historic buildings like the Opera House and the Paramount Theater recall a time when ladies visiting Downtown Crossing shopped for corsets —not danced on stage in them. Perhaps, then, the area is also reclaiming some of its original charm.

Clearly, the marketplace is strong: the 15-story, 256-unit Millennium Place sold in less than a year. But when Millennium Tower is finished, by 2016, the 625-foot tall building will change both the neighborhood’s and Boston’s vistas.

“The major difference between Millennium Place and the Tower will be the views,” says Baumert. “You can’t find views like the Tower’s upper floors anywhere in Boston. The only view that would compare would be from a helicopter.”


Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.


Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…


OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…


MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.


Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."


'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.


'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."


TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.


Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.


Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”


Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.


Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…


Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.


Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…


NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.


The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.