Massachusetts city aims for a downtown remake
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Architect Richard Heapes made his name more than two decades ago by planning Mizner Park, a stylish, extremely popular town center that rose like a phoenix from the site of a failed shopping mall in Boca Raton, Florida.
In the years since, Heapes moved to Street-Works LLC, a design and development company based in White Plains, New York, where he orchestrated endeavors such as Blue Back Square — gracefully stitching a 20-acre mixed-use complex onto the venerable town center of West Hartford, Connecticut.
Now Heapes is involved in probably the most challenging urban project of his career — the replacement of most of the existing downtown of Quincy, Massachusetts. The scope of the Massachusetts project is enough to make many planners queasy. Street-Works, where Heapes is a principal, intends to build practically a new downtown — “20 blocks of pretty traditional development: retail on the ground floor, something else above it,” as Heapes puts it — where now stands the partly attractive, partly nondescript business center of Quincy.
Street-Works envisions two hotels; destination retail, including a movie theater, a department store, and a supermarket; street retail with at least 30 restaurants; a wellness