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Connolly Brothers Completes MarketPlace for Cardinal Cushing Centers

Cardinal Cushing Centers MarketPlace building / Photo by Charles Field, Jr.

Beverly, MA – Connolly Brothers, Inc., a construction management firm serving private commercial, industrial, and institutional clients, announced it has completed construction of a new 20,000sf MarketPlace Building in Hanover to house the Cushing cafe, thrift store, and gift shop, along with state-of-the-art training classrooms for Cardinal Cushing Centers, Inc.

After shutting down at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the retail stores resumed operation when the $10 million MarketPlace Building opened on Dec. 1, 2020.

A nonprofit organization founded in 1947 in Hanover, Cushing Centers began as a day and residential school for students with intellectual disabilities. With additional locations in Braintree, Cushing now supports over 600 individuals of all ages, with the goal of helping each student and adult to become included and independent members of society.

Connolly Brothers demolished an existing structure on the property before beginning site work and construction. The three-story building is a slab on grade conventionally framed steel structure designed to complement the existing historic campus buildings. The first floor has retail space for the cafe, including a full-service kitchen, a thrift store, two classrooms and  two single occupancy public bathrooms.

The second floor includes four classrooms, four offices, and a bathroom with a shower. The third floor is dedicated to mechanical equipment. New energy recovery units were installed and are a source of fresh air and air circulation for the classrooms as well as recovering heat to pump back into the building.

After a new parking lot was built along one side of the building, Connolly adjusted and modified the other two parking lots to create a seamless parking area around three sides of the new building. A large concrete plaza was installed outside the main entrance and features tables and chairs where people can sit to eat outside.

Designed by ARC/ Architectural Resources Cambridge to meet the center’s sustainability goals, the new MarketPlace serves as a gateway to the Cardinal Cushing Center and a gathering place for both Cushing Center students and the surrounding community.

The facility is being planned in two phases. The current phase houses retail establishments owned and operated by the center and staffed by students, as well as six classrooms dedicated to the Vocational Services Program which provides on-site vocational and educational experiences. Phase Two will ultimately house administrative office suites, an employee training center, and additional learning spaces.

The project team included construction manager, Connolly Brothers; architect, ARC/Architectural Resources Cambridge; M/E/P/FP, Bala/TMP Consulting Engineers; structural, Boston Building Consultants; code, Howe Engineers; civil/site, VHB; kitchen, Colburn & Guyette; envelope, Building Envelope Technologies; and specifications, Construction Specifications.

The first phase also includes support spaces such as a quiet room, computer room, and private and shared offices. The retail spaces include the Cushing Cafe, a cafe/bakery with seating for approximately 40 people; Take 2, a thrift shop which includes a “sort room”; and the Unique Boutique, a gift shop which sells goods handmade by Cushing students and adults.

“We are excited to open our new MarketPlace Building. The new, expanded location for our three stores gives us additional opportunities to offer vocational training to our students age 10 to 22 and for the adults in our program to work in the businesses. It allows us to have a greater impact on our community,”  said Jansi Chandler, vice president of development for Cardinal Cushing Centers. “Connolly Brothers did a great job managing the construction on this important project, navigating COVID-19 and keeping the project on track to completion.”

Programs at Cushing Centers include, among others, affordable housing, community programs, education, employment training, recreational, therapeutic, and residential services.

With over 100 years of experience with non-profit institutions in its portfolio, Connolly Brothers has worked on both new construction and renovation projects of all types and sizes throughout Greater Boston.

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