Hillman Street Firehouse

109 Hillman Street is a Romanesque Revival firehouse constructed between 1892 and 1893. It originally served as the Engine No. 5 House, one of the many neighborhood fire stations in New Bedford, and later served as the City’s Civil Defense headquarters. 

The building has been vacant for years and has suffered from serious neglect and water infiltration. The building was slated for demolition by the city, however, because of the importance of the structure as a historic landmark, and its contribution to the historic fabric of the neighborhood, WHALE stepped in to save it.

Five years (and one pandemic) later, WHALE is actively working with the city and a development partner, CMK Development Partners, on rehabilitating the Hillman Street Firehouse for affordable and workforce housing.

This $3.7 million restoration project is supported by local CPA funds, HOME funds, state funds, ARPA and historic tax credits. Work will include the reconstruction of the historic dormers, masonry restoration and returning this unique and highly visible piece of New Bedford history to active and vital use.  Construction is slated to begin in 2024.