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First Look: Fidelity’s Planned World Trade Center Redevelopment

Boston Office

A Fidelity Investments proposal to redevelop its World Trade Center office and conference complex focuses on trading its exhibition hall for more retail and outdoor space. 

Rendering of the planned Seaport World Trade Center redevelopment

Pembroke, Fidelity’s real estate arm, will file a project notification form Wednesday with the Boston Planning & Development Agency for a planned, multi-year redevelopment at the 705K SF Seaport World Trade Center, the developer told Bisnow. The company has been weighing redevelopment options publicly since early 2017

While the project is expected to bring more street-level activity to the World Trade center when complete, Pembroke continues to emphasize it will not add “substantial” density or height. 

The plan calls for 45K SF of retail spread across both levels of the World Trade Center’s historic headhouse. The World Trade Center’s Commonwealth Hall exhibition space will be torn down to make way for nearly 164K SF of public outdoor space.

The revitalized World Trade Center will also feature conference and event facilities for the Fidelity-owned Seaport Hotel, which is across Seaport Boulevard from the development. 

Fidelity employs 1,500 people at its World Trade Center office, which will be redeveloped into a more flexible and collaborative layout in the plan. The company will continue to be the office development’s sole tenant when complete.

“By creating such a setting at the Seaport World Trade Center, our hope is employees will continue to collaborate and innovate even more fully in new and exciting ways to bring the best products and services to market for the benefit of our customers,” Fidelity Investments Head of Real Estate Alicia Sundberg said in a prepared statement.

More retail in the World Trade Center headhouse is planned for the redevelopment.

The Harborwalk around the redeveloped World Trade Center will also be enhanced with landscaping and niche spaces created by cutting into the building’s existing footprint. The development team is also planning enhanced site resiliency measures in anticipation of rising tides and storm intensity. 

“Fidelity and Pembroke have a long history in the Seaport, and we’ve seen firsthand our vision become reality as it's evolved into one of Boston’s most desirable destinations,” Pembroke President Edward Johnson IV said in a statement.

Construction on the redevelopment, designed by CBT and Schmidt Hammer Lassen, is expected to begin in early 2020 and wrap up by 2024.