Preservation Achievement Awards

2008 Awards

American Brewery Lofts view project

American Brewery Lofts, Mission Hill

251 Heath Street

Barnes School, East Boston view project

Barnes School, East Boston

127 Marion Street

Boston Medical Center view project

BCD and FGH Buildings, Boston Medical Center

One Boston Medical Center Place

Elder James Blake House view project

The Elder James Blake House, Dorchester

735 Columbia Road

BNN Charles J. Beard II Media Center view project

BNN Charles J. Beard II Media Center

3025 Washington Street

Cathedral High School Gymnasium view project

Cathedral High School Gymnasium, South End

74 Union Park Street

Boston Children's Musuem view project

The Boston Children’s Museum, Fort Point Channel

300 Congress Street

Liberty Hotel, Beacon Hill view project

Liberty Hotel, Beacon Hill

215 Charles Street

Photo courtesy of Bruce T. Martin

American Brewery Lofts, Mission Hill

251 Heath Street

Owner/Developer:

Commonwealth Ventures, LLC

Architect:

Elkus Manfredi Architects, David Manfredi, Principal in Charge

General Contractor:

Consigli Construction

Preservation Consultant:

Candace Jenkins

Designed in 1891, the richly ornamented Queen Anne style American Brewery complex is an outstanding survivor of the two dozen breweries that once thrived in the Mission Hill neighborhood. The breweries were placed along the Stony Brook Valley due to the proximity to an aquifer and nearby artesian wells.

While many of Boston's breweries did not last through the hard years of Prohibition, the commanding presence of American Brewery survived on Heath Street for over one hundred years. The project, designed by David Manfredi of Elkus Manfredi Architects and developed by Commonwealth Ventures LLC, transformed the brewery head house, brew house, and cold storage buildings into loft-style condominium residences. The project team restored the fine granite, brick and terracotta exterior with careful attention to detail. The striking tower at the corner of the complex was cleaned and restored. The twin archways that once allowed horse-drawn wagons carting water and barley in and the finished lager out were retained. New fenestration was added to the cold storage buildings and a newly constructed building completes the complex — bringing the total number of residences to 79 — and restores the historic industrial courtyard. Here, the simple brick and metal contemporary building relates positively to the historic fabric of the original American Brewery, while still claiming its own distinct identity within the complex.

Photo courtesy of J. D. Sloan

Barnes School, East Boston

127 Marion Street

Owner/Developer:

East Boston Community Development Corporation

Co-Sponsor:

East Boston Community Health Centers, Inc.

Architect:

Michael Angelo Interbartolo, Jr. AIA

Construction:

CWC Builders

Historic Preservation Consultant:

Tremont Preservation Services, LLC

Built in 1897, the Barnes School first served as an East Boston high school, and later became a middle school. In the mid-1980s, the school was closed and left without heat or regular maintenance for decades. The abandoned school became a magnet for graffiti, break-ins and loitering. Beginning in 2006, the building, which resembles an Italian palazzo, underwent a vast transformation from a neglected school building to a pristine elderly housing complex. The building was returned to its original turn of the century magnificence with its marble paneled walls, terrazzo floors, vaulted plaster ceilings and abundant ornamental plaster. The building's exterior underwent extensive masonry restoration and the decorative fencing was repaired. Led by Albert Caldarelli of the East Boston Community Development Corporation, and John Cradock of the East Boston Health Centers, the project was made possible by hard work and creative financing, including substantial support from Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Federal Historic Rehabilitation tax credits. The project includes a health center, a generous community space and 74 apartments for low-income seniors, some of whom attended the Barnes School as students.

Photo courtesy of Ginelle Land, Burt Hill

BCD and FGH Buildings, Boston Medical Center

One Boston Medical Center Place

Owner/Developer:

Boston Medical Center

Architect:

Burt Hill

Construction Manager:

William A. Berry & Son, Inc.

Preservation Consultant:

Tremont Preservation Services LLC

Owners Representative:

RF Walsh Project Management Inc..


Designed by Gridley J.F. Bryant and completed in 1864, the BCD and FGH Buildings are the only two remaining structures from the original Boston City Hospital, a free hospital established to serve Boston's "working poor". The three-and-a-half story brick Mansard buildings once housed multiple medical wards each, lending the names "BCD" and "FGH".

Today's needs for administrative office space called for additional floors within the historic structures. In order to preserve the character of the buildings, the project team devised a system of adding new levels of workspace by injecting two new levels set back from the exterior walls, thereby creating a system of mezzanine floors within the original volumes and preserving the elegant high windows. The exterior was rehabilitated using historic photographs, facilitating the restoration of a bell cast slate roof and the installation of two new carved granite lintels to match originals. Previously, the BCD Building stood vacant for 30 years while the FGH Building was only partially occupied due to building deficiencies. Today, the "BCD" building houses Boston Medical Center's Information Technology Department, with 150 workstations, private offices and team spaces, while "FGH" contains a Conference Center and administrative offices of several clinical departments.

"Boston's hospitals face great challenges as they endeavor to maintain their historic buildings while providing the highest quality of facilities for their employees and patients. This project is proof that both can be achieved with remarkable success" said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance.

Photo courtesy of Earl Taylor,
Dorchester Historical Society

The Elder James Blake House, Dorchester

735 Columbia Road

Owner:

Dorchester Historical Society

Architect & Preservation Consultant:

John V. Goff

Project Team:

Earl Taylor, President, Dorchester Historical Society; Ellen Berkland, caretaker of the Blake House; Jerry Eide, Principal of Hill Town Restoration

Built in 1661, the Blake House is a rare example of a post-Medieval timber-frame house. It is thought to be one of only a few examples of "West of England Country" framing in the United States. The Blake House is of high historical significance to the Dorchester neighborhood and the city of Boston as a Boston Landmark and as the second oldest surviving house in Massachusetts.

In 2005, the Dorchester Historical Society, owners of the Blake House, undertook the major effort of rehabilitating the building. After completing a thorough study and assessment of the house, the Society decided to return the first period building not to a conjecture of what it possibly looked like in 1661, but to its appearance following the Society's 1890s "Arts and Crafts" style restoration of the structure. The Dorchester Historical Society took advantage of the vast amount of documentation and photographic evidence of these early efforts in historic preservation to create an accurate representation of the building as it existed at the turn of the 20th century.

"The Alliance is very excited about the rehabilitation of the Blake House. The philosophy of taking the building back to the era of its 1890s Arts and Crafts restoration was an extremely thoughtful approach and highlights an important moment in the history of the preservation movement," said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance.

Photo courtesy of John Horner Photography

BNN Charles J. Beard II Media Center, Egleston Square

3025 Washington Street

Owner:

A Partnership of Boston Neighborhood Network and Urban Edge

Architect:

Scott Payette Architects

Construction Managers:

AJ Martini Inc.

Preservation Consultants:

Tremont Preservation Services LLC, Building Conservation Associates Inc

Construction Owner's Representative:

CS2C/NE

Built in 1909 by the Boston Elevated Railway Company (predecessor to the MBTA), the substation in Egleston Square was used to convert power for the elevated Orange Line until the line was relocated in 1986.

After sitting vacant and deteriorating for nearly two decades, local nonprofit developer Urban Edge purchased the building in 2005. Working in partnership with Boston Neighborhood News, Urban Edge transformed the neglected building into a neighborhood resource. Originally a large, single-story, 45-foot tall room, the substation now contains offices, educational spaces, production facilities and media studios on two floors, providing the consolidated BNN studios with 10,000 square feet of space. Project financing was provided by generous public support from the City of Boston and the use of State and Federal Historic Rehabilitation and New Markets Tax Credits. The project was redeveloped using sustainable designed and construction practices and is slated for LEED certification by the US Green Building Council.

"The synergy of green building practices and historic preservation coupled with community revitalization efforts make this a highly significant project for the Egleston Square neighborhood and the city of Boston," said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance.

Photo courtesy of Robert Benson

Cathedral High School Gymnasium, South End

74 Union Park Street

Owner:

Cathedral High School

Architect:

CBT Architects

MEP Engineer

Fitzmeyer & Trocci Associates, Inc.

Structural Engineer:

Souza True & Partners

Construction Manager:

Payton Construction Corporation

Surrounded by the 1875 neo-Gothic Cathedral of the Holy Cross and a commercial district, Cathedral High School's new gymnasium is a strong contemporary contributor to Washington Street's varied architecture. The four-story brick building meets the goals of the Washington Gateway Initiative, which requires that new development create an active streetscape along a rapidly evolving urban corridor. CBT Architect's design of the gymnasium succeeds by reflecting the neighborhood's architectural identity while addressing the MBTA's Silver Line shelters with a combination of brick and metal facades. The athletic activity that takes place in the brightly lit interior enlivens the entire block through tall glass doors and clerestory windows.

"The Cathedral High School Gymnasium draws successfully from the collection of historic buildings around it, but also stands out as a high quality piece of architecture that reflects the era in which it was built," said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance.

Photo courtesy of Steven Turner Photography

Boston Children's Museum,
Fort Point Channel

300 Congress Street

Owner/Developer:

Leggat McCall Properties LLC, Karl R. Neubauer, Project Manager

Architect:

Cambridge Seven Associates, Peter Kuttner, FAIA, Principal

Construction:

Shawmut Design & Construction

Landscape Architect:

Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, Inc.

Preservation Consultants:

Building Conservation Associates, Inc.

Project Team:

American Architectural Iron Co., Thomas G. Gallagher, John A. Penney Company, Inc., Chapman Waterproofing Co.

Built in the late 19th century, the former wool warehouse on Fort Point Channel that houses the Boston Children's Museum had not been significantly renovated or altered since the Museum moved there in 1979. The scope of the 19-month project required that the beloved Boston institution be able to accommodate its visitors for all but three months of construction. The 150,000 square foot renovation of existing facilities and the addition of a 23,000 square foot glass enclosed atrium incorporated sustainable design components. The building has received silver LEED® Certification and is the first green museum in the city of Boston. The project faced sensitive components such as proximity to the sea wall, occupied renovation, and environmental design and construction in pursuit of silver LEED® Certification.

"The Boston Preservation Alliance is thrilled that the Boston Children's Museum chose to renovate its existing historic building while creating an addition that pulls inspiration from its industrial surroundings" said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance. "Educating children and parents alike about sustainability and the importance of historic preservation is another reason why this project is deserving of much praise," she added.

Photo courtesy of Kwesi Arthur

Liberty Hotel, Beacon Hill

215 Charles Street

Owner/Developer:

Carpenter & Company

Architect:

Cambridge Seven Architects, Gary Johnson, Principal

Association Architect for Preservation:

Ann Beha Architects, Pamel Hawkes, Principal

Completed in 1851 and designed by architect Gridley James Fox Bryant, the Charles Street Jail is considered one of the best examples of the "Boston Granite School" of architecture. The cruciform shaped jail served as an international model for prison architecture for the second half of the 19th Century. Closed in 1990 due to harsh conditions considered to be unfit for prisoners, the building was acquired by the adjacent Massachusetts General Hospital shortly thereafter.

The space remained vacant and unused until 2000, when the hospital selected Carpenter & Company to develop and Cambridge Seven Associates and Ann Beha Architects to redesign and adapt the complex as a luxury hotel. Using Federal and State Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits, the exterior of the Jail has been fully restored and the cupola, removed in 1949, has been recreated as documented in Bryant's original architectural drawings. The removal of the 18 foot prison wall, which previously hid the Jail from public view, has opened up the site to the rest of the Beacon Hill neighborhood. The construction of a 16-story tower, clad in contemporary materials, provides a contrast to the heavy granite of the jail and relates architecturally to the character of Charles Street and neighboring hospital buildings.

"The Boston Preservation Alliance is thrilled with the transformation of the Charles Street Jail into the Liberty Hotel. This is a fantastic example of how a historic building can be given a new life that contributes strongly to our city," said Sarah D. Kelly, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance.