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BOSTON-One of the nation’s largest districts of Victorian row houses is set to undergo a $23-million rehab that will revamp the aging structures and give them another 40 years of usefulness.

Robert Goldstein, with R.E. Goldstein Development Consulting in Belmont, a consultant for the developer, Tenant’s Development Corp., tells GlobeSt.com that the project is designed to restore 20 historic South End row homes containing 100 low-income rental units to their former glory.

“We’re going to be adding about 40 years to their life,” says Goldstein, noting that redevelopment plans call for the restoration of the buildings’ exteriors, including the masonry, roofs, windows, and mechanical systems. Since there are few architectural details left in the buildings’ interiors following renovation work done in the 1970s, only interior hallways will be revamped to preserve handrails and other turn-of-the century details, he says. Work on the project is set to be completed in December 2007.

“We are preserving the South End’s history while adding much needed affordable housing in an area that is highly desirable and yet unattainable for over three-quarters of the area’s renter population,” says Patrick Martin, managing director of CharterMac Capital LLC, a subsidiary of Charter Mac, which provided more than $23 million of debt and equity financing for the project.

Built at the turn of the century, the row houses are located within a five block area in the South End, primarily on Massachusetts Avenue, and are designed as affordable housing for residents of that neighborhood, says Goldstein.

The historic properties, which were listed on the National Register of Historic places in 1972, contain a mix of studio to four-bedroom units in four- and five-story, bow-front Victorian row houses. The neighborhood has the largest concentration of Victorian row houses in the country, Goldstein notes.

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