|It isn't easy for a modern, high-tech city to also be quaint and historic. So a hat tip to the Boston Preservation Alliance for encouraging the four-century-old built legacy that gives the Hub its distinct personality. On Thursday, the BPA called together the players who keep the region?s historic identity vital and presented several with Achievement Awards.
|On stage at the Modern Theatre—itself recently restored—we snapped Boston Public Work?s Para Jayasinghe with Alliance president Susan Park and New Atlantic Development's and Alliance chair Peter Roth accepting the award for the restoration and improvement of the Congress Street Bridge. Built in 1930 by the Strauss Bascule Bridge Co. of Chicago, the span is still a vital link between the Financial District and the historic Fort Point neighborhood, a warehouse district turned arts haven. Materials in the bridge?s unique ornamentation were replaced, while replicas of the original lanterns and new utilities were installed. A bike lane was added, and the bridge was made handicapped accessible.
|Even new buildings are eligible. The Suffolk Co.?s Michael Rauseo joined Susan and Peter to accept the award for Folio Boston, a new 172k SF mixed use project that incorporates an 1807 three-story Charles Bulfinch building. Designed by CBT Architects and developed and built by the Suffolk Co., Folio combines upscale retail, luxury condos and underground parking. The Bulfinch structure forms the corner of the new complex and was the inspiration for its design and materials: iron-spot brick of deep purple, burnt ochre brick, and metal windows that capture sunlight to activate the fa ade.
|Old South Meeting House?s Emily Curran took a bow for the non-profit's work restoring the tower clock on the Old South Meeting House. Created in 1766 and installed in 1770, it's believed to be New England?s oldest tower clock still in operation in its original location. The North clock face was restored and the South face—too damaged to save—was replaced by a solid mahogany replica. With paint analysis, the faces are now painted in their earliest known color, vibrant black, made using a traditional smalting process. The clockworks were disassembled, cleaned, replaced if necessary, and reattached with a new, more secure system designed to last for generations. There were many more projects recognized and we'll try to give a few more shout-outs in coming days.