The first sunshine in over a week greeted the City of Lynn last Thursday, and in the Diamond District, those rays of light were accompanied by the sounds of construction vehicles, sledgehammers, axes and busy-ness all around.
City Light Homes, a company that buys, remodels and then re-sells homes in a short period of time, purchased an Ocean Street home (corner of Ocean Street and Atlantic) from the estate of the previous owner, Miss Constance (Connie) as we knew her in the neighborhood. Connie passed away this fall, and her former home has found its way to City Light Homes. In turn, City Light’s latest venture is being filmed by A&E Network, for a series called “Flip This House.”
Three gentlemen are involved in the project: Dave Seymour, David Souhleris, and Karriem Cherry, who was eagerly watching the remodeling begin, taking pictures along with the rest of us. Mr. Cherry commented on the multi level benefits of the project to the city. Beyond taking a dilapidated home in Lynn’s historically registered seaside neighborhood and bringing her back some current day grandeur, the Ocean Street project is employing several young people to work on the project, sourced from Lennox Inc., a Lynn based organization. This group engages unemployed young adults ages 16-24, most of whom have not completed high school and all of whom come from low-income families. By exposing this group to a trade, offering training and on the job experience, Lennox, and this project ultimately, assists them in building their own lives.
On this first day of work, the crew from Lennox was inside, helping with demolition and getting a first hand look at the “Before” of this project. Many will stay on to see the “After” as the house is readied to be “flipped” or sold in quick fashion, for a profit. The home is about 2000 square feet, and prior to demolition, was home to Connie and a tenant on the second floor. Seymour and Souhleris purchased the home for $217,000, and while they have not made public how much this renovation is costing, Diamond District residents are hoping they do an extensive and thorough job worthy of this Ocean Street address.
This project will take approximately 90 days from start to finish, bringing it to market just in time for spring. On Ocean Street, the spring season is usually filled with the refreshing scent of a warming ocean, the sound of neighbors re-emerging from their winter hibernation, and soon the promise of new voices among us.