18 & Union

18 & Union is a project at the entrance to New Bedford’s historic downtown core, being undertaken by LaFrance Hospitality. The project involves the substantial rehabilitation of two historic building sites; the National Club and C.E. Beckman Co. Inc. Buildings. WHALE is serving as an historic consultant for the project, which will create housing, restaurant and retail spaces.

Zeiterion Theatre

Built in 1923, this Classical Revival Style theatre right in the heart of downtown, was owned by Barney Zeit and his brothers who wanted “the biggest and best theatre in New Bedford”. Closed by the late 1970’s, WHALE led efforts to save the theatre and restore it to its former glory and role as a performing arts center. Now, nearly 40 years later, WHALE is once again involved with “the Z” as a consultant for a new massive rehabilitation project that will accommodate the space and performance needs of a modern day venue.

Places that Matter

In partnership with the Trust for Public Land (TPL), WHALE is creating a “greenprint” of New Bedford. A greenprint is a map of places that matter to a community, and creating one starts with community input and leads to state-of-the-art computer models and maps developed using Geographic Information System (GIS) software. The final interactive map will help New Bedford make informed decisions about how to grow while preserving the character, environment and quality of life in the city.

Co-Creative Center

For over 10 years, the vacant “Barker’s Lane Block” was an abandoned hole in New Bedford’s historic district.

Breaking Ground This Year

In 2023, WHALE will begin construction on THREE new projects. This is incredibly exciting for us since we’ve been working on these projects for years.

Places that Matter: New Bedford

Places that Matter: New Bedford project will identify and map places that are historically and culturally important, and we need to learn what places matter to you.

Some Projects Return

It’s hard to describe the conditon of the Zeiterion Theater when WHALE undertook it’s restoration in 1981. After years of neglect, it was derelict, decrepit, and in shambles. Demolition was likely.

First Baptist Church: Home of “Robert’s Rules of Order”

Constructed in 1829, the Greek Revival style 3-story white clapboard church was an expansion of the Tiverton Baptist Church established in 1685 by Mayflower passenger, John Cooke. This iconic local landmark was rehabilitated over the course of ten years and opened in November, 2023 as the Steeple Playhouse.