Waterfront Residential Development South Boston

A new development located on the site of a historic dock that will engage with the waterfront.

South Boston, MA
265,000 sf
Project Team
Koos Louw Principal in Charge
Krista Knickerbocker Project Manager
Chin Chin Yao Designer

In the early twentieth century, this historic site was occupied by a structure that sat atop a pier, projecting into the water. The new building would similarly extend over the water. This development will make use of the full parcel, creating a dynamic building largely surrounded by water. By engaging the water as such, this building will increase public waterfront access by 900% relative to the existing condition through an extension of the existing waterfront walkway. These public walkways will be adjacent to a series of tidal terraces, which continue the fabric of the building into the water. Public open space will also increase by 550% compared to the existing condition, as the building footprint will only occupy less than 50% of the landscape terrace.

The proposed project is a 12-story residential development of 284,000 square feet, occupying a waterfront parcel of 59,838 square feet. In addition to the residential units, a number of public and community amenities will occupy the base of the building.

The active geometries of concrete and glass mimic the rocks and water below. Concrete is also employed to define the sculpted edges of the building. This angularity evokes imagery of marine stealth technology, while the glass curtainwall and guardrails keep the building light and transparent. This transparency allows ample daylight in, dynamic views outward, and reflections of the sky.

The face of the three story podium is defined by a concrete screen shaped like ocean kelp with varying densities of spacing between blades. The density of blades varies with programmatic requirements and views. Tying together the podium levels, the screen defines the edge an outdoor deck off the second level harbor restaurant, and extends vertically as the guardrail for the third floor open air pool balcony.

Nine stories of residential units rise above the podium, with full perimeter balconies at each floor, maximizing views and outdoor space. The balcony guardrails are a combination of concrete and glass with undulating faceted profiles that shift from floor to floor. The reflectivity of the glass layered on top of the opaque concrete creates dynamic shadow lines and ever-changing reflections similar to rippling water. Dune grass, pervious paths, and wood boardwalks connect effortlessly to the ocean front location. ¬