Architects: Leers Weinzapfel Associates Architects, Inc
Location: Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Principal in Charge: Jane H. Weinzapfel, FAIA
Project Manager: Winifred A. Stopps, Senior Assoc. AIA LEED AP
Project Architect: Alan Christ, AIA LEED AP
Design Architect: Tom Chung, Senior Assoc., AIA LEED AP
Project Team: Kevin Bell AIA, Susan Crowe Knight, Laura Duncan, Shih-Min Hsu AIA, Hannah Jackson RA, Irene Kang AIA LEED AP, Matt Petrie AIA, Jared Ramsdell, Marley Wright RA
Project Area: 12,270 sqm
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Anton Grassl/Esto
Khoury Levit Fong shared with us their proposal for the GLOW/SHIFTboston Copley Square Competition. Their concept consists of an urban room, and hanging in the middle of it is a great chandelier. Dewdrop-shaped globes hang from a funicular mesh support, each illuminated by a wick-like row of low-energy addressable LEDs. It is light which is given weight and pulls down upon its supports to produce an inverted dome of scintillating light. Through the middle, the oculus at the center, the unobstructed sky is visible again. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Housed in Boston’s first skyscraper the Ames hotel effortlessly combines old world glamour with modern luxury. Designed by world renowned architect David Rockwell, the hotel is a design hotspot, featuring huge spiral staircases, installations made from thousands of mini metal discs and even old world New England curiousity cabinets. General manager Cate Farmer and director of sales Paul Sauceda take Crane.tv on a tour of the only hotel in the city worthy of your forty winks.
Gustafson Guthrie Nichol (GGN), with Crosby Schlessinger Smallridge (CSS) of Boston, were recently announced as the recipients of the biennial Tucker Design Award for 2012 for their North End Parks in Boston, MA. First presented in 1977, the award is a nationally recognized architectural design award in both the building and landscape industries and honors those whose work demonstrates excellence in concept, design, construction and use of natural stone. More information on the awards after the break.
New York-based architectural photographer Paul Clemence has shared with us recent images and his thoughts on Massachusetts College of Art and Design’s new student residence hall that is being constructed in downtown Boston. The 21-story, $61 million building is planned for completion this year.
Boston is not particularly known as a destination for trendy, contemporary architecture; but some new buildings are beginning to change that perception. From Diller Scofidio Renfro’s Institute of Contemporary Art to Norman Foster’s new wing at The Museum of Fine Arts to the recently completed Renzo Piano addition to the beloved Gardner Museum, the city’s urbanscape is getting a much needed updating. And now, a soon to be finished bold new project by the firm ADD Inc is bringing a colorful twist to the mix. They are the designers behind the new MassArt Students Residence Hall.
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The Boston Society of Architects (BSA) recently opened its new headquarters, BSA Space, Boston’s leading cultural institution on architecture and design. The design of the new headquarters by Boston-based firm Höweler + Yoon Architecture is centered around a highly visible “cloud” ceiling and an iconic stair. These two architectural elements act as brand markers for BSA Space and an invitation into the exhibits and meeting spaces above. More images and project description after the break.
The newly constructed wing for the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop, opens to the public today with a celebratory ribbon-cutting ceremony accompanied by the City of Boston’s Mayor Thomas M. Menino. Designed to preserve the 1902 historic building, the 70,000 square-foot addition will offer purpose-built spaces for concerts, exhibitions and classes, along with enhanced visitor amenities. The museum will also be kicking off an inaugural season of exhibitions, performances and events that will highlight the buildings wide range of programming.
“This new wing is an extraordinarily elegant workshop, a bustling counterpoint to the historic building’s serenity. Here, the thinking and the work of the Museum is performed, so that the Palace, which had been put to uses for which it was not equipped, can once again give visitors the experience Isabella Stewart Gardner intended: a personal confrontation with art,” said Anne Hawley, Norma Jean Calderwood Director of the Museum.
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Envisioned as an urban grove, this central gathering space represents the convergence of community in this diverse, mixed income, residential development. The design accommodates a complex program, layering the varied multi-cultural and intergenerational uses with a number of meaningful gathering and recreational spaces for the residents. Tai Chi, chess, children’s play areas, and contemplative seating areas allow for various groups to utilize the garden spaces in different ways. Lawn areas can be used for sunbathing in the summer and also provide the community with areas for flexible programming during larger gatherings, such as celebrations for the Chinese New Year, Russian Unity Day, and other cultural and civic events.
Boston Society of Architects (BSA) recently launched their lecture series which opens up on September 21st with Jeremiah Eck, FAIA as he considers a simple way to infuse sustainability and light in homes; Barnaby Evans does something similar for cities while Chee Pearlman enlists design for the betterment of humanity and Audrey O’Hagan, AIA looks boldly toward the future of the profession. All free BSA lectures take place at 6:00 pm at the BSA Space multimedia room (290 Congress Street, Boston). More information on the series after the break.
The U.S.G.S. recently reported that an earthquake struck the Washington, D.C. area with a preliminary magnitude of 5.8 (later updated to 5.9). Initial reports of damage are minor however the National Cathedral’s central tower sustained some damage. “It looks like three of the pinnacles have broken off the central tower,” spokesman Richard Weinberg said of the tower, the highest point in Washington, D.C.
Update: The Cathedral has sustained some substantial damage due to the earthquake, and experts are currently assessing the structural and aesthetic damage. For a video of the Cathedral damage, or to help join the efforts of preserving the Cathedral click here.
Update: You can also see the effects of the earthquake on a building in Virginia here.
Felt in Philadelphia, North Carolina, Boston, New York City, Martha’s Vineyard, and even Wheeling, West Virginia, the tremor raises questions of the importance of seismic considerations particularly in New York City.
Although earthquakes are not something a typical New Yorker would have cross their mind in comparison to other parts of the world such as Japan (8.9 magnitude in 2011) and Chile (8.8 magnitude in 2010), the overal size and density of NYC puts it at a high risk for extensive damage.
More photographs of the Washington National Cathedral and discussion regarding seismic considerations following the break.
Opening in 2012, the $118 million steel, glass, and copper-clad expansion to Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum by Renzo Piano Building Workshop will more than double the size of the current facility. Included in the project are a new entrance, music hall, gallery space, and other amenities for an institution that has remained largely unaltered since opening in 1903.
Cambridge Public Library wins Harleston Parker Medal / William Rawn Associates and Ann Beha Architects
The Boston Society of Architects/AIA announced the winner of the 2010 Harleston Parker Medal as the Cambridge Public Library by William Rawn Associates Architects and Ann Beha Architects. Each year, the Boston Society of Architects (BSA) and the City of Boston award the Harleston Parker Medal to “the single most beautiful” building or structure built in the Greater Boston area over the past 10 years.
More images of the winner after the break.
The International Living Future Institute launched the Living City Design Competition in 2010, seeking designs for our cities in the year 2035. map-lab’s submission was ResilienCity. ResilienCity seeks to set the vision for the future of Boston’s Innovation District, a new neighborhood built on grey field and brownfield sites that will provide residences and workplaces for over 300,000 people.
We have reached the tipping point where we need to think of the whole, not the self. We have arrived at a time when we need to stop behaving selfishly and begin to explore how we can all come together as a community to create environments that are culturally enriching, healthier, and equitable. We come back to nature to do this. Additional images of map-lab’s submission and a continuing narrative can be seen after the break.