Twenty-nine-acre brick building complex in Watertown, Mass., to be renovated as innovation hub

The owner of a 29-acre cluster of brick buildings in Watertown, Mass., wants to reinvent the site as a 21st-century innovation hub.

September 04, 2013 |
Drew Ballensky

Editor's note: This is a sponsored article. All text and images were provided by the sponsor company.


The owner of a 29-acre cluster of brick buildings in Watertown, Mass., wants to reinvent the site as a 21st-century innovation hub. Known for many years as the Watertown Arsenal, the facility stored gunpowder in the 1830s, built cannons for World War I, and housed an Army materials lab in the 1950s. Health care software maker athenahealth Inc., which bought the Arsenal on the Charles for $168.5 million, envisions about 150,000 sf of new office space for itself and other businesses.

The proposed redesign includes a glass-enclosed atrium expanding a building that houses the New Repertory Theatre, walking and bike paths connecting the campus to the nearby Charles River, outdoor meeting spaces, an Arsenal museum, landscaped parks, a farmers market, a beer garden, new restaurants, and incubator space for smaller health information start-ups. The plan will require zoning changes and other approvals from the town of Watertown to add height to existing structures and build walkways between some buildings. It also may require state approval to alter historic structures.


Drew Ballensky | Reconstruction Blog

Drew Ballensky is general manager of Duro-Last Roofing, Inc.’s central U.S. facility in Iowa and company spokesman for Duro-Last’s cool roofing, sustainability and architectural education programs. He is past-president of the Chemical Fabrics and Film Association and chairman of CFFA’s Vinyl Roofing Division. Drew earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial technology from the University of Northern Iowa and master’s degree in business administration from Florida State University.
Drew has over 29 years experience in business and industry in various engineering and managerial capacities. He has worked in the U.S. and Canadian operations for a major international manufacturer of pre-engineered steel buildings, was a financial analyst with a major athletic apparel manufacturer and was an owner of a general contracting company.

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