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New Balance to build headquarters in Brighton

With design finalized, New Balance will begin construction on a wellness center and hotel in Brighton Center. PHOTO COURTESY OF BOSTON REDEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY

Residents of Brighton will see a major renovation to their community as New Balance, a Boston-based athletic shoe and apparel company, plans to build a world headquarters and health and wellness district near the Massachusetts Turnpike, officials said.

The headquarters will feature two high-rise office buildings, a hotel, a sports complex, retail shops and restaurants.

The complex, called Brighton Landing, will be set along Guest Street, which runs parallel to North Beacon Street in downtown Brighton near New Balance’s current world headquarters, said Amy Dow, the New Balance senior corporate communications manager.

Dow said the company is excited to help revitalize the community.

“This is an area that has had industrial buildings and warehouses,” she said. “We are looking forward to refreshing it and making it a place where people who work here and people who live here in the Allston-Brighton community are proud to come and enjoy the amenities.”

Construction is scheduled to begin in 2013, Dow said. The project should be completed by 2015.

“These plans have probably been in the works for a couple of years,” she said. “The different architectural plans have been approved. It is a long process, but we have great partners.”

The Boston Redevelopment Authority released the master development plan for the Brighton Landing site on March 20.

Along with architectural outlines, the plan outlined the corporation’s desire to positively impact the community. “[New Balance] seeks to provide thousands of employment opportunities, first-class sporting and fitness facilities, diverse retail, significant open space and improvements to the existing infrastructure,” the master plan stated.

New Balance recognizes the historical importance of Brighton, according to the BRA.

“[New Balance] celebrates the historic significance of the Brighton stockyards and now seeks to create a neighborhood district focused on health and wellness,” the plan stated.

New Balance has been working with Allston-Brighton throughout the planning process, Dow said. The company has considered the community’s feedback, including suggestions such as green space and a sizeable sports complex, she added.

“In an area that is probably not today utilized by the community, it’s something the community is looking forward to being upgraded and refreshed as a place they can all enjoy,” Dow said.

Brighton Landing will also feature a New Balance-sponsored Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority commuter rail stop that is scheduled to be completed in 2014, Dow said.

Pamela Hennessey, a Brighton resident, said she was excited about the addition of a T station to the community.

“It will give us easy access,” she said. “It will create a lot of business and bring a lot of business in. A[n MBTA] stop will be wonderful.”

Roisin Macioce, also a Brighton resident, said, while Brighton Landing will be an asset to the community, she is worried about the increased traffic it might bring to the area.

“It will be beneficial and spread a lot of business, but with the shipyard over there, there could be a lot of congestion,” she said. “I hope it brings jobs, but it will cause a lot of traffic.”

Dow said she expects the development not only to be an asset to the Brighton-Allston community, but an aid for Boston area college students as well.

“For students that are looking to be in the Boston area, this will improve a piece of the Allston-Brighton community, so they would look at this as something they would want to live in and work in,” Dow said. “When you have additional office space, you have additional opportunities — as well as the sports complex — to offer to the area.”

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