DeSantis joins Boylston Properties as senior development manager

September 01, 2023 - Owners Developers & Managers
Michela DeSantis

Boston, MA According to Boylston Properties, a local developer of mixed-use properties, Michela DeSantis joined the team earlier in 2023 as senior development manager. DeSantis initiates and manages new development opportunities in the Greater Boston area for Boylston, overseeing all aspects of new development, from site acquisition through project stabilization, including underwriting, entitlements, design and oversight of construction and leasing.

Prior to joining, DeSantis was the senior director of development at AvalonBay Communities, Inc., where she oversaw and managed the new development of more than 1,000 apartment homes throughout Massachusetts. Prior to AvalonBay, she worked at Fidelity Investments as part of the firm’s internal management consulting practice, as well as at Macquarie Capital in investment banking covering the real estate industry.

DeSantis joined Boylston as the firm delivered Arsenal Yards earlier this year, a nearly $1 billion investment that transformed the Arsenal Corridor in the East End of Watertown. This mixed-use development includes a 302-unit luxury apartment community, a new hotel, and 400,000 s/f of ground-up and redeveloped life science space, in addition to the 250,000 s/f of retail that has made Arsenal Yards one the region’s hottest new neighborhoods.

“As we ramp up new multifamily development, Michela hit the ground running and brings a wide set of skills and expertise to our newest projects in and around Boston,” said Andrew Copelotti, principal at Boylston Properties. “The housing crisis in our region is dire, and we believe increasing supply is one of the only ways we can enact change in the short term. Michela’s local knowledge and understanding of permitting, design, and community outreach, in addition to her broad development experience has made us that much more effective this year. We’re thrilled she joined our team and our mission, and look forward to bringing more transit-orientated housing product to the region as soon as possible.”

“Michela is joining at the perfect time as a handful of our developments from the past 10+ years hit stabilization, and we constantly explore new acquisition and ground-up opportunities,” said Mark Deschenes, president of Boylston Properties. “Our development thesis is that plenty of underutilized acreage exists in our housing-starved region – often hiding behind abandoned or unkept industrial plots and facilities -- and our investment platform has succeeded in unlocking value, economic vitality, and housing stock for these communities.”

“It’s been great ramping up at Boylston Properties this year, and I couldn’t be happier to join a like-minded team, eager to uncover and capitalize on opportunities for multifamily development in the area,” said DeSantis. “This is a critical time for Greater Boston in terms of housing creation, and we are well positioned to make an impact with our short-term pipeline and long-term goals.”

DeSantis holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor of arts degree in Economics from Harvard College.



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