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MassMutual’s Future Seaport Office Brings Curves To Fan Pier

Rendering of MassMutual's future office at Parcel E on Fan Pier

A Fan Pier office building proposal looks to break the glass box mold of surrounding development. 

Plans for MassMutual’s 315K SF, 239-foot Seaport office at Fan Pier’s Parcel E include 10K SF of ground-floor retail and a curved exterior wall facing Boston Harbor. Boston’s Elkus Manfredi Architects designed the project, which features outdoor terraces on the 13th and 16th floors, according to Boston Civic Design Commission documents. The $240M project will go before the BCDC Tuesday night. 

The curved design comes after years of critics chiding the Seaport for boxy, lackluster architecture and being akin to a suburban Dallas office park. Developers have responded with more ambitious architecture, like WS Development’s plan for 88 Seaport Blvd. and Skanska’s 121 Seaport.   

The Fallon Co., Parcel E's developer, has made several adjustments to its original plans for land it owns on and near Fan Pier. Fallon proposed in late 2017 to strike a hotel proposal at Parcel H next to law firm Goodwin's office at 100 Northern Ave. and replace it with a multifamily development. Parcel E was originally slated to feature a lab development, but the developer also amended that to its current office plan.

MassMutual announced in February it was pursuing a $300M expansion in Massachusetts, including $50M to improvements to its Springfield headquarters as well as the Seaport expansion. MassMutual CEO Roger Crandall said the state’s talent pool was a driver for his company’s decision, but the business-friendly practices of Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration also played a role. The company is getting a $46M incentive package on the basis it will bring 2,000 jobs to Massachusetts.