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BOSTON-A month after developers nailed down financing, construction began on the Crosstown Center project, a mixed-use, multiphase project being developed by a minority-led partnership that includes locally based developers Kirk Sykes, Tom Welch, Gene Sisco and Corcoran Jennison Company.

The project is located at the corner of Massachusetts Ave. and Melnea Cass Blvd. at the entry to the $14 billion Big Dig project, and has been called a “gateway” to the city’s future by City Mayor Thomas M. Menino. “This project will become a vibrant urban center for Roxbury, Newmarket and the South End,” says Menino.

The first phase of the project involves a 10-story, 175-room Hampton Inn & Suites hotel, 22,000 sf of restaurant and retail space and a 650-car garage. The developers emphasize that construction will be completed by spring 2004, in time to host delegates and guests for the Democratic National Convention. The second phase of the project will include a 282,000-sf office building, 33,000 sf of retail space and another 600 spaces of parking.

The city has invested nearly $17 million to fund the $140 million project.

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