Buzzards Bay Group Buys Building in Downtown New Bedford

By Joe Cohen
Standard-Times Staff Writer

NEW BEDFORD — Seeking to get closer to the object of its efforts and to raise its profile, the Coalition for Buzzards Bay has purchased a building in the city’s historic district that is a long stone’s throw from New Bedford Harbor.
John Vasconcellos, vice president of development and communications, said the coalition purchased the building known as the Coggeshall Counting House at 114-120 Front St. in December from local real estate broker Jeff Pontiff. The new headquarters is on Route 18, north of Union Street and across the road from Wharfinger’s and State Pier.
The coalition is going through the permitting process, refining its plans and anticipates a major renovation to start this spring and be completed by spring 2010.
When finished, the coalition intends to have the most environmentally “green” building in New Bedford, if not the entire region, Mr. Vasconcellos said.
Mr. Vasconcellos would not disclose the building’s purchase price or cost of renovations, but confirmed that renovations alone will exceed $1 million.
The coalition plans to use the entire building for its growing administration staff, which currently numbers 14 people. The building has 12,000 square feet of space. The building will include, in addition to office space, meeting space, a resource library, exhibit space and a laboratory.
Mr. Vasconcellos said the “essence” of the reason for choosing the building is that it is on the New Bedford waterfront and “New Bedford is the heart and soul of the Buzzards Bay watershed.”
The coalition will move from rented space at 620 Belleville Ave. in the North End.
Contact Joe Cohen at
January 16, 2009 6:00 AM
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