“What architect isn’t interested in housing? I hate the whole blasted idea of it. I think it’s a worthy undertaking – to provide a decent apartment for a man who earns fifteen dollars a week. But not at the expense of other men. Not if it raises the taxes, raises all the other rents and makes the man who earns forty live in a rat hole. That’s what’s happening in New York. Nobody can afford a modern apartment – except the very rich and the paupers.
Have you seen the converted brownstones in which the average self-supporting couple has to live? Have you seen their closet kitchens and their plumbing? They’re forced to live that – because they’re not incompetent enough. They make forty dollars a week and wouldn’t be allowed into a housing project. But they’re the ones who provide the money for the damn project. They pay the taxes. And the taxes raise their own rent. And they have to move from a converted brownstone into an unconverted one and from that into a railroad flat.
I’d have no desire to penalize a man because he’s worth only fifteen dollars a week. But I’ll be damned if I can see why a man worth forty must be penalized – and penalized in favor of the one who’s less competent”.
Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead, 1943
“The Places in Between” is the title of the new week of events on architecture and urban planning organized by Common Boston. For whom of you who are not familiar with it; Common Boston is a group of volunteers that aims at connecting designers with the public while raising awareness on sustainable and equitable communities. [Read more…] about The Places in Between
Located in Boston’s Marine Industrial Park, there is a space (HQ headquarters) is the space where ideas and projects are shaped into reality: its from Design Museum Boston creators to artists, bicycle artisans and more. A total of 25,000 square feet space looking like a pristine canvas, ready to be painted. [Read more…] about Is Space-Sharing Healthy Living?
Many privately owned businesses and residential areas are growing as more people come to live in the Boston area. Multiple MBTA stops and future stops near the end of the orange line and some stops on the silver line are becoming more residential and hugely populated. [Read more…] about Residential Expansion on Boston’s MBTA
Boston – Downtown Crossing has been in the news a lot lately. The Filene’s building recently got a developer, in the past few years the Paramount and Modern theaters and the Boston Opera House have been rehabilitated, Scholars American Bistro and Cocktail Lounge opened a few months ago, and the vacant Modernist building that used to contain Borders Bookstore has an opportunity to do something great for the neighborhood depending on its next tenant.
Boston – The open house held at the Hayden building on Monday, June 4 signaled the beginning of a new chapter in the building’s eccentric history. Renowned architect HH Richardson designed the building in 1875. However the Hayden fell into neglect as Boston’s red light district nick named “the Combat Zone” developed around it. In 1985 a fire damaged its upper floors. In 1993 Historic Boston Incorporated in a similar state of disrepair. [Read more…] about New Life for H.H. Richardson’s Hayden Building
Boston – The 42nd annual Boston LGBT Pride Celebration began with a rally on Boston’s City Hall Plaza June 1st , as described on Boston.com. The Plaza was a logical choice of venue for this rally; many other organizations have used it for similar events. Still, each time crowds gather on City Hall Plaza for these special occasions, those of us who are mindful of urban design considerations can be easily (and sadly) reminded of just how rare crowds on the Plaza really are. [Read more…] about Another Event on Boston’s City Hall Plaza, Another Reminder of How Crummy the Plaza Now Looks. Here Is One Way to Do Better.
The BRA last month approved the design for a 197 unit housing project at 411 D Street, which has been lauded as a renewed concept of design excellence to the Seaport Innovation District.
During the time this project was approved, I had the pleasure of being one of two scholars at the AIA Committee on Design Spring Conference hosted in Columbus, IN, with a goal of identifying what defined architectural design excellence. As I have begun to analyze this theme upon returning to Boston, I find myself obsessing over a question from one of the conference speakers, Ed Feiner. [Read more…] about Innovation District?
Boston – With their light wooden frames, flat or slightly pitched roofs and stacked porches, the three-decker residence has become a staple in the architectural make up of Boston’s urban neighborhoods. [Read more…] about Preserving Boston’s Iconic Three-Decker House
Boston – A small parcel of state-owned land in Chinatown in Boston will soon be moving towards large-scale development, says Massachusetts officials and the Boston Globe.