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This blog is a place for dialogue on issues and actions relating to Boston's unique built environment and the preservation and continuing evolution of historic resources within it. My goal, as the Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance, is to post timely, relevant and thought-provoking intelligence, ideas, and insights that will engage conversations, inform our actions, and broaden perspectives on preservation.

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Greg Galer, Executive Director, Boston Preservation Alliance

Executive Director

AllianceViews Blog

Hooray for the BSA

March 9th, 2012  |  Posted by: Boston Preservation Alliance

The New BSA Space with INFORM Exhibit Installed / Photo credit: Keith Lagreze, over,under

Here at the Alliance, we could not be more excited about the new Boston Society of Architects headquarters at Atlantic Wharf. There’s really so much to be excited about. To begin with, it is housed in what is surely one of the most important preservation projects of 2011 (and the winner of one of the Alliance’s Preservation Achievement Awards). Developed by Boston Properties and located on the Downtown side of Fort Point Channel, the project  consists of three historic buildings that are remnants of Boston’s 19th and early 20th century maritime industrial history. Thanks to our friends at CBT Architects, the warehouse buildings have been remarkably restored, but they’ve also been transformed by contemporary interventions, from an enclosed courtyard with a stunning water feature to the glass tower that seems to float on top of the weighty, brick structures. Somehow the new and the old are ideally balanced, juxtaposed to each other in a way that is perfectly harmonious.

If you have not yet been to see the exhibit INFORM, curated by Chris Grimley, Michael Kubo, and Mark Pasnik of over,under, you must go now. The new BSA Space‘s inaugural show, which opened in early February (see photos from the opening party here) tells the story of the city’s past, present, and future through the eyes of designers. Part of what makes it so successful is its outward-looking orientation, as it seems to extend well beyond the realm of architecture to other activities that make Boston so vibrant, or, as the exhibitors put it, “combining architecture and urban planning with the design of information, exhibitions and events.” What an encouraging message from the professional association for Boston’s architecture community, and what a signal that Boston is trying to shed its image of conservatism in design and insularity in culture. The exhibit works so naturally in the exhibit space, designed by Howeler  + Yoon, that it’s almost hard to imagine anything else taking its place. But somehow I have a feeling this is just the appetizer.

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