Preserving Boston’s Atlantic Wharf
Creating a fresh, inviting space that is sustainable while preserving history can create loads of challenges for any landscape architect.
Now place that location in Boston — one of the oldest cities in the country — and have it include 42 percent of previously existing historical structures, and you’ve got quite a trial on your hands.
The folks at Halvorson Design Partnership embraced such a project at Boston’s Atlantic Wharf, presenting a solution that both preserves and improves the historic site.
Atlantic Wharf faces the notable Fort Point Channel, which is surrounded by busy banks full of historical buildings and sits less than half a mile from South Station, where buses, the subway and trains are among the many transportation choices.
Here, an open park and events space rest with sculpted seatwalls, an integrated pergola and lighting structure – redesigning a pivotal segment of the Boston Harborwalk.
The landscape design includes a striking, 18,000-square-foot planted roof terrace on the restored mercantile Graphic Arts and Tufts Building. Layered plants of varied color and height establish a richly textured foreground for the office tower’s waterfront views, in addition to hardscape areas and paths of crushed stone to support events use and access. The green roof helps minimize the heat escape in the energy-efficient building and reduce stormwater runoff.
As Boston’s first sustainable high-rise development to reuse materials, Atlantic Wharf introduces more sustainable green spaces to an essential city segment, as well as creates a cohesive design that blends the historic with the modern.