A groundbreaking was held this week for ‘TWENTY|20’, a 20-floor, 355-unit luxury apartment high-rise at the burgeoning 5.2-million-square-foot mixed use neighborhood in East Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The first of more than 500 steel-reinforced concrete pilings were driven for the start of the first new building of 18 that will form Cambridge’s newest neighborhood over the next several years at NorthPoint.

Twenty 20 Cambridge Rendering“We are proud to play a role in helping a long-dormant site become an active place where people will live and work,” said Thomas N. O’Brien, Managing Director of The HYM Investment Group, LLC. “Cambridge has a specific need for new opportunities for growth to accommodate the needs of the life sciences and technology sectors in particular. We’re pleased to contribute to the City’s future.”

When completed, NorthPoint will have about 2,800 residential units and approximately 2.2 million feet of commercial space.

Among those attending the groundbreaking ceremony and speaking were Massachusetts Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki, State Sen. Sal DiDomenico, City of Cambridge Councilor and Vice Mayor Denise Simmons, and Cambridge City Councilors Marjorie Decker, Craig Kelley, David Maher, Leland Cheung, and Minka vanBeuzekom.

“These new residences are the beginning of a great new and vibrant neighborhood that will enliven East Cambridge,” Cambridge Mayor Henrietta Davis said in a statement. “I am looking forward to the new NorthPoint — the new jobs, places to live and shop, and transportation opportunities that will come along with it.”

‘TWENTY|20’, located at number 20 on a new way called Child Street, just north of the Gilmore Bridge, will feature 8,690 square feet of retail space at the base of its studio to three-bedroom apartments.

The tower, scheduled for initial occupancy in spring of 2015, will have a fitness center and half-court basketball, media and gathering rooms, a conference room, roof deck, security, garage and bicycle parking, and 24/7 concierge service.

Twenty 20 Cambridge GroundbreakingForty-one of the units will be below market in price. The building is expected to achieve a LEED Silver rating for sustainability, and two new parks are being built simultaneously with the residential tower. A grand pedestrian connection will link the street level and parks of NorthPoint with the Gilmore Bridge and nearby Community College Station on the MBTA’s Orange Line.

NorthPoint is a 45-acre former railyard that was permitted for office, residential, lab, recreational and other uses by the City of Cambridge. The 5.2 million square feet will be about three-fifths residential and two-fifths commercial, including office, lab and retail space.

NorthPoint Common, an 11-acre centrally located park, one of many amenities, is complete, with a view of the north tower of the Zakim-Bunker Hill Bridge. Two exisiting, low-rise residential buildings were completed earlier at NorthPoint, with more than 90 percent of the 329 units sold or under agreement.

Lechmere Station, on the MBTA’s Green Line, is scheduled to be relocated by the Commonwealth in a brand-new facility across Mons. O’Brien Highway from its current location and adjacent to the new NorthPoint development. The state is also committed to extending the Green Line north from the new Lechmere Station through Somerville to Medford.

‘TWENTY|20’ was designed by CBT Architects and is being constructed by John Moriarty & Associates of Winchester. A construction loan for ‘TWENTY|20’ was provided by Wells Fargo.

NorthPoint in East Cambridge is a joint venture of The HYM Investment Group, LLC of Boston, the development partner; Canyon Johnson Urban Funds of Los Angeles; and Pan Am Railways of Billerica, MA.