Mass MoCA Building 6

Phase 3 is the realization of a 25-year master plan and completes the site circulation plan, encouraging multiple ways to explore the MASS MoCA campus. Two buildings with a combined 130,000 square feet of undeveloped space create areas for video, film and multi-media exhibits as well as events, workshops and storage. The design continues Mass MoCA’s “museum within the museum” concept by collaborating with artists, foundations and collectors. Each collection is curated by its author to have its own distinct character. MASS MoCA curates the remaining space, with places for changing installation pieces by emerging artists.

Phase 3 also continues to improve connections between MASS MoCA and the town of North Adams. Development of the West Main Street access route enhances the museum’s access to the downtown business district, and campus bike paths link the museum to a regional pathway initiative.

With the completion of Phase III, MASS MoCA has become one of the largest contemporary art museums in the country.

Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center

A much-needed modernization and radical reorganization of uses brought new spaces into the public sphere with multi-story linkages throughout the site. It is part of Harvard’s ongoing ‘Common Spaces’ initiatives, intended to ensure that its physical spaces foster intellectual, cultural, and social experiences on campus.

Our team worked as Executive Architect with Harvard’s client team and with Hopkins Architects, the project’s Design Architect on extensive planning and programming for this once-controversial campus icon. The now-historic architecture of Josep Lluis Sert has been carefully reinterpreted with increased transparency across the first and second floors and improved connectivity between the original arcade and two busy side streets. A series of additions and removals at the exposed concrete walls and piers in the arcade introduce light into the heart of the building, while remaining respectful to the logic of Sert’s original design.

Newly accessible landscaped plazas at the north and south ends of the site, a dramatic roof garden, and an interior birch grove reinforce the building’s openness to Harvard Square and mediate between the Arcade and the new ‘Harvard Commons’ space – the multi-level central room of the Campus Center. Flexible interior spaces for performances and other events attract and mix the university’s varied constituencies– faculty, undergraduates, staff, graduate students, and visitors from the public-at-large.

The building’s tenth floor is converted to a suite of engaging formal and informal meeting spaces, as well as a café. The lower floors have six new food venues within, as well as a new restaurant facing a major side street. Building envelope work included full concrete restoration and introduction of safety and solar improvements to the building’s fenestration.

Lunder Arts Center

As part of the newly formed Porter Square Arts District, the Lunder Arts Center beautifully blends the community’s long history of artistic expression with Lesley’s contemporary approach to education. From state-of-the-art-studios and classrooms to dedicated collaborative areas, this is a dynamic space that’s designed to foster conversation, creativity and community engagement.

Incorporating the historic North Prospect Congregational Church was a crucial part of our design process. Relocating the church to its original location was an exciting opportunity to bridge 19th-century ecclesial traditions with 21st-century architecture. The renovated church is accompanied by an adjacent new structure that compliments its iconic architecture and draws inspiration from the industrial heritage of the city. The result is a terra cotta-clad studio wing informed by the massing, scale and detail of the church, which was converted to house the art library, offices and design studios.

From the street, an active urban plaza leads to a dramatic glass-enclosed entry connecting the two buildings, juxtaposing the past and the present and representing the interdisciplinary dialogue between the traditional studio arts and new media. This space invites the Lesley community and Cambridge residents to gather, display art, host events and more.

The center was also designed with a focus on sustainability achieving LEED Gold certification. The complex maintains a healthy indoor environment for student artists with the use of energy efficient ventilation systems and is modeled to use 40% less energy than required by code.

R.W. Kern Center

Certified as a Living Building by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), the 17,000-square-foot center joins just 16 other Living Buildings certified to date. At the time of completion, the R.W. Kern Center was the largest Living Certified higher-education project in the world.

The building is prominently sited on Hampshire’s campus and serves as a welcome center for staff, students, and their families. The central floor-to-ceiling glass pavilion maintains a connection to the outdoors and serves as a hub of campus activity with a common area, community living room, and café on the ground floor and gallery above. Two stone-clad wings house admissions and financial aid offices and classrooms with views of the amphitheater, rainwater harvesting reservoirs, solar farm, and wildflower meadow.

With a solar canopy to generate electricity, the rainwater harvesting system for net-zero water, and exposed walls in the mechanical rooms, the building itself serves as a learning and teaching laboratory. Daily tours and signage give students and visitors the opportunity to participate in collecting and analyzing data regarding green building practices. New classes are built around the teaching opportunities the living building makes available, inspiring the kind of inquiry and stewardship embodied in Hampshire’s philosophy of contributing to knowledge, justice, and positive change in the world.

Selected from over 40 entries in a design competition, our plan rerouted a corporate campus drive, replaced it with the wildflower meadow, and created a human-centered landscape with the Kern Center as the new heart of the campus. Using local stone and wood, the building emphasizes the importance of the relationship between indoors, and the plaza and landscaping around the building encourages people to enjoy being outside and around the building, not just inside it. All building materials are Red List compliant, avoiding products made with toxic chemicals, to make the center the healthiest possible working and learning environment for students and staff.

“The R.W. Kern Center provides a model for addressing global challenges and a symbol of the positive change possible in how we approach built environments.” -Jonathan Lash, President, Hampshire College

Charles River Speedway

In 1899, the Metropolitan Park Commission constructed the Speedway to serve as a headquarters to support the new parkway along the Charles River. What was once a bustling gathering place in the community became an abandoned structure suffering from decay and fire damage in 2005.

Working alongside the Architectural Heritage Foundation, Bruner/Cott was able to breathe new life into this Boston Historic Landmark. Now, it is home to a variety of tenants and serves as a gateway to the Allston-Brighton neighborhood.

Throughout the design process, it was important for us to stay true to the building’s original architects. The arched gable entrances, porches, double hung windows and elaborate wood trim were all thoughtfully incorporated as they are characteristic to William D Austin’s architectural work for the Metropolitan Park Commission. An irregular roofline connects six shingle-style buildings, creating a single-story courtyard for residents and visitors to enjoy.


Boston University School of Law

The buildings are seamlessly attached at the base by a new two-story all-glass atrium that serves as a social hub for the complex. Together the buildings provide state-of-the-art classrooms, practice court rooms, and conference rooms; a dining hall; multiple study and lounge areas; two libraries; and 164 offices for faculty and staff. The renovated tower restores the glory of Sert’s original design while updating the interiors to provide light-filled spaces and sweeping views, boost energy efficiency, and improve access to classrooms and training facilities.

Constructing the new Redstone Building was part of our strategy to keep the law school on the existing site rather than build a new complex elsewhere. While the building absorbed much of a former outdoor plaza, the new space includes floor-to-ceiling windows in a café overlooking the Charles River and the expansive glass atrium entrance to bring the outside in. Students benefit from an expanded library, inviting study and lounge areas, and spacious classrooms and training rooms that are easily accessible.

The materials, colors, and details of the Redstone Building complement Sert’s tower, whose exterior was meticulously repaired and restored. Like many buildings of the era, the cast-in-place and exposed aggregate precast panels of the Tower weathered poorly. Concrete spalled and steel frame windows and panels failed. We fully restored the building’s façade, repairing the concrete and replacing window and metal panels with modern, energy-efficient assemblies of similar design. Painted ventilator panels in Sert’s original bold colors have brought back the brilliance of his 1960 design for all to appreciate.

In addition to the external issues, the tower never worked well for its occupants. Its 18 stories were served by six small elevators which conveyed students to 100-seat classrooms on the upper floors. At peak times, it took as long as 20 minutes to go from one class to another. The gut renovation of the building’s interior included moving a majority of the larger classrooms to the adjacent Redstone Building, creating faculty and administration office space on the upper floors, and rehabilitating the Pappas Library with much-needed cosmetic and structural upgrades.

The project achieved LEED Gold in 2016. Renovation of the historic Tower earned the project points for building re-use, and replacement of the inefficient 1960’s-era mechanical systems earned the project critical energy points.

Redstone Building Program:

  • Total classrooms: 19
  • Sloped classrooms: 8
  • Training rooms: 2
  • Flat floor classrooms: 9
  • Practice court room: 1
  • Dining: 3,300 sf
  • Lounges: 4
  • Offices: 7
  • Tower Reno Program:
  • Total classrooms: 17
  • Sloped classrooms: 9
  • Training rooms: 2
  • Flat floor classrooms: 8
  • Practice court room: 4
  • Lounges: 8
  • Student activity rooms: 6
  • Offices: 157

The Huntington Theatre

Our team restored the theatre in a way that acknowledges its historic past, but also reflects contemporary performing arts venue standards. This balance is achieved by reclaiming the special character of the original façade, drawing attention to it with a new marquee, embracing the unique character of the original auditorium, and weaving in new architecture and interiors that enable modern day social experiences and first-rate physical and technical support.

The new Huntington offers “Radical Hospitality” through a hyper-welcoming environment that increases access for all Bostonians and visitors and provides an elevated experience. Existing lobbies maintain their intimacy, while an improved flow throughout will make them feel less crowded. The sparkle of refurbished light fixtures is augmented by modern lighting that accentuates the building’s remarkable original design. New seating, carpet, and paint colors are informed by historic paint analysis, transforming the auditorium into an enhanced version of itself.

As a first-rate, modern performance venue, the theatre sets high technical standard for superb performances and artistic excellence. Enhanced stage technology offers greater flexibility, easier operation, and expanded opportunities for creative expression. Modern seating with improved comfort, better sightlines, and accessibility for all paired with new loading, production spaces, and dressing facilities, supports and drives first-class productions.

Frost Terrace

With cost of living on the rise and the percentage of low- and middle-income households dwindling, Cambridge was in need of more affordable housing. This issue, identified as part of a multi-year planning and visioning initiative called Envision Cambridge, is often cited as one of the most significant social issues in the city. Frost Terrace creates needed, high-quality, multi-family housing for 40 low- and middle-income households.

The design of the buildings and site at Frost Terrace contributes to a vibrant streetscape and unfolds in a varied volumetric composition that transforms its site and context for contemporary use. The composition has four anchoring elements— (1) the former ‘William Frost House’, a restored second empire building relocated on the site into realignment with an adjacent historic church building; (2) a five-story masonry volume set behind the William Frost House constructed c. 1865; and (3 and 4) twin shingle style homes constructed c. 1900. An elevated three-story ribbon-like, clapboard volume knits together these diverse elements and unifies the site.

Frost Terrace’s approach to sustainable design aligns with the principles of affordable housing—lowering utility costs, conserving resources, prioritizing mobility (bikes and transit) and creating healthy living environments for residents. This LEED Gold certified project includes re-used existing buildings and materials, wood structure and finishes, energy recovery ventilation, efficient electric-driven heat-pump systems and highly insulated envelopes.

Waltham Watch Factory

Nineteenth-century entrances are now large lobbies, one with a permanent exhibit of Watch Factory history. Narrow wings with high ceilings — already flooded with natural light for watchmakers — house modern offices with views of the courtyards and the Charles River. Outside, a series of protected outdoor spaces invite pedestrians to move through the office buildings and a large residential courtyard. A new restaurant and café mark the beginning of a historic walkway through Waltham along the Charles River.

The Watch Factory is on the Charles River, and responsible storm water management is a critical issue. A series of “rain gardens” collects, cleanses, and naturally cools storm water runoff. Roof water is collected in open granite and concrete runnels, featured across the pedestrian courtyards, and directed to specially planted areas. The design process included the Charles River Watershed Association, and the water is now clean and cool enough to release directly into the river.

The Viridian

The Viridian at 1282 Boylston Street is a mixed-use development in Boston’s historic Fenway Park district. Living space in the growing urban village here is highly sought after, and the design responds to the density and desirability of the area by creating market-rate one- to three-bedroom apartments and micro units for the professionals, students, young families, and empty-nesters moving into the area. Ground-level retail anchors the building, and a dramatic three-story atrium lobby welcomes residents and guests.

The 342 apartments feature open floor plans and stunning views from openable floor-to-ceiling windows. Amenities include two rooftop decks on the fifteenth and twentieth floors overlooking the city and Fenway park, a fitness center, resident lounges, and two “work labs” with computer bars and conference rooms. Below-grade parking accommodates 295 vehicles, and the Fenway Community Center on the ground floor connects residents to people, programs, and events in the community.

Completed in a record 20-month construction time, the building is designed around an innovative structural steel frame and rests on a 350-foot-long base with 15,000 square feet of ground-level retail. We worked closely with neighborhood associations to address concerns about context and separated the two residential towers at the tenth floor to break the streetscape massing and transition from the low-rise historic buildings nearby.

A variegated terra-cotta rainscreen skin covers the exterior, creating pattern and texture. LEED Gold certified, the Viridian includes energy-efficient mechanical systems, environmentally responsible materials, and abundant bicycle storage.