BOSTON-As part of its effort to revitalize the theater district on Lower Washington Street, the Boston Redevelopment Authority is exercising its power of eminent domain to take the dilapidated Modern Theater so it can be rehabilitated for cultural use.

Meredith Baumann, spokesperson for the BRA, tells that the seizure is a “friendly taking” from the Levin Family Trust. She says that the payment for the seven-story, 800-seat theater is still under negotiation.

“This is the third of the Mayor’s priority theaters on Lower Washington Street that were named to the 11 most endangered list,” notes Baumann, referring to the other two theaters on the street that the city wants to see renovated–the Paramount and the Opera House. Millennium Development Partners owns the Paramount and is in the process of renovating the building. A court ruling recently cleared the way for the city to move forward with its plans for a $30-million restoration of the Opera House.

City Mayor Thomas Menino began to raise public interest in rehabilitating the theaters about seven years ago by naming the three theaters to the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s 11 Most Endangered Theaters List.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2023 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

Dig Deeper



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join now!

  • Free unlimited access to's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including and

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2023 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.