Last month we hosted a Metropolis Think Tank event with a dialogue focused on moving beyond homogeneous architecture in the city of Boston. The Metropolis Think Tank is a live research program which connects design thinkers, clients and other local groups to create an open dialogue. Thanks to Maverick Productions, we have a video of the discussion available.
The panel we assembled discussed the Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex and architecture’s impact on a city. The conversation ranged from Boston’s current skyline to its potential to the commitment of Northeastern University to excellent design. Much of the conversation touched on not only the courageous architecture of the ISEC, but also on the potential connectivity in the city due to the pedestrian bridge, which will cross the Amtrak / MBTA tracks to unite two sides of the campus and two Boston neighborhoods.
Beyond Homogeneity – Boston’s Solution
Banal architecture plagues modern cities everywhere. In Boston the conversation surrounds the timidity of its recent architecture — uniform structures and the same glass box that dominates the skyline — regardless of climate, culture, material resources and specific needs. The new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex at Northeastern University breaks through this wave of homogenous architecture. We analyze the bold vision to rethink the university’s campus and the institution’s research agenda. How did this happen and why, in Boston, do we often see a lack of institutional courage to build something truly inspiring?
Michael R. Davis, FAIA, LEED AP, President, Bergmeyer Associates, Inc.
Wes Schwartz, AIA, Senior Associate, Payette
Rachel Slade, Editor of Boston Magazine
Kathy Spiegelman, Vice President & Chief of Campus Planning and Development, Northeastern University
Kevin Sullivan, FAIA, President / CEO, Payette
Susan Szenasy, Publisher / Editor in chief, Metropolis magazine