A long-abandoned historic building in Dorchester’s Uphams Corner will soon be resuscitated as a combination bike shop and cafe.
The city-owned Comfort Station on Columbia Road, which was used as public restrooms and office space, will be redeveloped by a pair of nonprofits and run by the owner of Bowdoin Bike School, a shop about a mile away. The developers, Historic Boston Inc. and American City Coalition, were picked after a months-long process by city officials.
“The Comfort Station is an important part of Uphams Corner’s history,” Mayor Martin J. Walsh said in a news release. “We are thrilled to see it returned to use, and look forward to the continued revitalization of this important neighborhood.”
The small stucco-and-tile building, adjacent to a historic cemetery at Columbia Road and Dudley Street, was built in 1912 and abandoned in 1977. Noah Hicks, a local entrepreneur, will run a full-service bicycle shop and cafe at the site, to be called Bike Kitchen. At least one other combo bike shop and cafe is located in the Boston area, but Lexington’s Ride Studio Cafe is a bit of a schlep for Dorchester cyclists.
Tom Palmer, a spokesman for the developers, said fund-raising for the $915,000 project will take about a year, and construction will last nine months. The cost estimate has dropped from the $1.1 million reported earlier. The developers said Utile Inc. will be the project’s architect, and the renovation is meant to seed the neighborhood for similar investments.