WE06 - Revitalizing the Iconic Christian Science Plaza

Wednesday, November 28 from 8:30 AM to 10:00 AM « Back

Abstract Text:

Originally designed by I. M. Pei & Partners and Araldo Cossutta, Associated Architects, in the 1960s, The First Church of Christ, Scientist’s (TFCCS) 14-acre plaza is a privately owned publicly accessible open space. The original landscape architecture, reflective of its time, includes seating and trees that formed barriers and is not aligned with the current vision of TFCCS to provide a welcoming outdoor urban oasis for the surrounding community. The original concrete materials are failing and the reflecting pool has been leaking into the garage below.

This workshop will focus on the revitalization of the plaza, including modernizing the pedestrian visitor experience and solving the complex technical challenges of the 70,000 SF reflecting pool while being sensitive to its landmarked status. Sustainability goals and implementation of water efficiency measures, while maintaining the important reflectivity of the pool will be discussed. And, with several adjacent projects in development, including the construction of a large tower, the team will address “Logistical Harmony” or orchestrating the plaza scope while keeping community paths maintained and the church operational. The $60M reconstruction of the plaza began in the Fall of 2016 with a targeted reopening date in the Spring of 2019.

Learning Objectives:

Understand urban design concepts that promote community and welcome pedestrian/visitor traffic while preserving historic elements

Understand the key factors, considerations, and benefits in implementing large scale, urban storm water collection and infiltration systems

Understand strategies to navigate the public approvals processes, including the Boston Redevelopment Authority and Boston Landmarks Commission

Understand strategies and approaches to achieving “logistical harmony” on complex, multifaceted projects including orchestrating scope and maintaining operations


AIA Credit Hours:
1.5 LU

Education Tracks: Reposition - Renovate - Revitalize

Event Type: Workshops > Session