Special to the Journal
Thomas O’Brien, founding partner and managing director of the HYM Investment Group, was asked the following question at the July 26 jobs fair at Suffolk Downs: How many new construction jobs will there be for HYM’s housing and commercial project on the 161-acre site of the former racetrack?
“There are going to be 14,000 total construction jobs, and then in the end there’ll be about 20,000 permanent jobs in the buildings,” replied O’Brien, whose project will ultimately deliver the largest single creation of housing by a redevelopment project in greater Boston history.
That’s why the atmosphere at the jobs fair was so optimistic and inspiring for the close to 300 men and women who attended the event. Interestingly, the well-organized fair was held near the finish line of the former racetrack, but this event represented a potential new start for the many job seekers.
The Greater Boston Building Trades Unions, John Moriarty and Associates, the HYM Investment Group, and the City of Revere hosted the job information session that was designed to recruit and train the next generation of building trades workers.
Praise for Revere’s Mayor
Thomas O’Brien led off the brief speaking program at the fair by praising Revere Mayor Brian Arrigo, a theme carried forth by the union officials who also addressed the gathering.
“Among the most important partnerships we’ve had from the people who helped us and worked with us, there has been no better champion for us than Mayor Brian Arrigo, who’s been with us since the very beginning,” said O’Brien. “The mayor is leading the city in a way that is helping Revere develop a new direction for creating jobs, creating next tax revenue, rebuilding the school system, building a new physical high school in Revere. All these things are amazing and positive developments in Revere. We’re really excited about the work we’ve been able to do.”
Mayor Arrigo Speaks at the Job Fair
Arrigo, who drew a significant ovation from the many union leaders and job candidates in attendance, said that when he first met with O’Brien in the Mayor’s Office in 2017, he told O’Brien that “I want to make something [at Suffolk Downs] where we’re creating jobs for the people in the City of Revere.”
The attendance at the job fair by scores of Revere residents affirms Arrigo’s vision.
“What we have before us is really a transformational opportunity for the people who live in Revere to have economic opportunities, not only in great-paying construction jobs and union construction jobs, but also the ability for us to have long-term investments and jobs for folks that are going to be able to work here and live here and enjoy themselves forever,” said Arrigo.
The mayor said the Revere economy was basically based around a dog track and a horse track, which are no longer in operation.
“So, when Tom O’Brien came knocking, it was really clear that we needed economic opportunity for our residents, your children, and your children’s children,” said Arrigo. “So that’s what we have here, and we’re excited about the opportunities.”
Also speaking at the job fair were Chris Brown, CEO of general contractor John Moriarty and Associates, Sprinkler Fitters Local 550 Business Agent Mark Fortune, and Carpenters Union Local 218 Business Manager Richard Pedi.