Talbot-Norfolk Triangle Eco Innovation District

Dorchester, Massachusetts, United States

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Neighborhood Type: Residential

Size: 46 Acres

Website: http://www.csndc.com

Lead Stakeholder: CSNDC and Talbot-Norfolk Neighbors United

The Talbot-Norfolk Triangle Eco-Innovation District (TNT EID) is a comprehensive sustainable development initiative spanning 13 blocks of Codman Square, a historic area in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, MA. Codman Square boasts a long history as one of Boston’s major civic centers and is host to a wealth of historic buildings including schools, churches, and public facilities dating as far back as the early 19th century. However, the district has historically been underserved and economically disadvantaged, with an increasing number of abandoned commercial buildings and unsafe, deteriorating residential housing stock.

Thirty five years ago, a place-based organizing entity, the Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corp. (CSNDC), was formed. For the last 13 years, it has been led by Gail Latimore, a former architect and veteran of nonprofit management and development with over 25 years of experience working in the public and nonprofit sectors. In 2009, the community began an extensive, community-based, area-wide planning process called Millennium 10. This work engaged over 1,000 residents in a comprehensive effort to create bold environmental, economic, and social equity goals in the Talbot Norfolk Triangle. Partially fueled by a new transit corridor, the Fairmont Commuter Rail Line, the neighborhood coalesced in 2012 around a grassroots commitment to sustainable redevelopment without displacement and a focus on job creation, transit-oriented growth, and neighborhood revitalization. The effort spurred the creation of the Codman Square Eco-Innovation District.

The TNT EID marries green, transit-oriented development (TOD), renewable energy, water conservation, alternative energy, sustainable food systems, and climate preparedness through social and environmental resilience. This neighborhood-led, first-of-its-kind project in the City of Boston is working in a 13 block section of Codman Square with 1,500 residents––the Talbot Norfolk Triangle––using sustainability as a lens through which neighborhood improvements occur.

The Eco-Innovation District’s goals include:

– Retrofit at least 50% of existing housing with new insulation, saving residents money
– Support local businesses in saving money by helping them to participate in energy efficiency programs
– Build at least two new highly energy efficient Transit-Oriented Developments (TOD), at least one of which is mixed-use
– Explore local power generation models like community-shared solar that serve residents
– Construct and program new green spaces, such as urban agriculture sites
– Develop resident support for increased sustainability
– Achieve at least LEED-ND Gold certification. 

The TNT EID is the first Ecodistrict in the City of Boston, and was formed specifically to address both sustainability and economic prosperity through a holistic urban regeneration process. The TNT EID implements projects that result in improved resident health and safety; energy and related cost savings; positive, measureable positive impacts on climate change; increased food security; and local job creation.

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