A Visionary Reinvestment in Historic Structures

The once-dilapidated property is now a welcoming entryway into downtown Salem

Salem Jail Residences

Historic Jail Complex LLC
Salem, Massachusetts

The transformation of the historic Salem Jail from an abandoned property into a bustling mixed-use development is a testament to the benefits of preserving the connection between old and new. Finegold Alexander’s design restored a circa 1813 jail complex and adapted it for residential and mixed use, including a full-service restaurant and an original jail cell to convey the history of the property. Essential to the success of the project was tight coordination between team members. The support of federal and state agencies in procuring the necessary historic tax credits was also of critical importance.

(Photo credit: Neil Alexander)

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37,300 SF
Renovation, Addition
Condominiums, Private-Entry Homes, Restaurant Space, Exhibition Space
2010 American Institute of Architects, Multi-Family Housing Award
2010 National Housing Rehabilitation Association, Timmy Anderson Award for Excellence in Historic Rehabilitation
2011 Historic Salem, Preservation Award
2011 Massachusetts Historical Commission, Preservation Award
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Project EUI
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“The adaptive-reuse and rehabilitation of the Salem Jail is one the finest examples of how historic preservation can have a catalytic impact on communities.”
Thom Amdur, President, National Housing and Rehabilitation Association

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Different parts of the former jail complex were converted to serve different purposes. The original jail building, constructed in 1813, with a major addition by Gridley J. F. Bryant in 1884, contained apartments that were converted into condos and a restaurant. The jail keeper’s house, possibly designed by Samuel McIntire, was converted to three private entry homes. The carriage house hosts a single unit and exhibit space, and the new building houses eight duplex homes.

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“It is a great example of how cities and towns can work with developers to keep important buildings intact and meet the new needs of residents, businesses and the community.”
Mayor Kim Driscoll