Building 12 Receives Maine Preservation Honor Award

Building 12 of the Portland Foreside Development was recently recognized by Maine Preservation with a 2023 Honor Award!

The project transformed a three-story 1895 brick warehouse formerly belonging to the Portland Company and used for storing wooding casting patterns. The building was carefully dismantled and reconstructed on a new site and renovated to become Twelve, an acclaimed dining destination with offices and residences above.

Bruner/Cott Architects ensured the reconstructed exterior maintained its historic integrity while designing a new internal structure using steel and composite slabs, modern insulated walls and roofing system, and reproduction windows.

Cambridge Historical Commission Honors Two Bruner/Cott Projects

Two Bruner/Cott projects have received Preservation Awards from the Cambridge Historical Commission – Harvard Hall and 120 Brookline Street!

The Cambridge Preservation Awards Program, inaugurated by the Historical Commission in 1997, celebrates outstanding projects and notable individuals who conserve and protect the city’s architecture and history. Awards are given each May for projects completed within the previous calendar year, as May is National Preservation Month. Due to COVID-19, the 2020 awards ceremony was postponed until October and held virtually. Both Harvard Hall and 120 Brookline Street were honored, and 120 Brookline Street won the Popular Vote for the evening.

Harvard Hall is a brick, granite, and brownstone classroom building situated at the edge of Harvard Yard and Harvard Square, designed in the High Georgian style by Governor Francis Bernard and built by Thomas Dawes between 1764-1766. Major preservation accomplishments of the exterior restoration project include reconstituting deteriorated brownstone profiles with new stone, reuse of original brownstone harvested from the building, reconstruction of the cupola’s belfry and execution of a thorough paint analysis and historic paint color selection. The building was returned to the 1870 time period with new stone at the addition and its period paint color reinstated at window trim, cornice trim and cupola cladding. The comprehensive, highly detailed restoration of Harvard Hall’s exterior contributes to Cambridge’s historic character by re-establishing the coherence of its masonry surfaces and profiles and color scheme from 1870 and masonry from 1766 as distinct from earlier and later buildings within Harvard Yard.

The project at 120 Brookline Street is a renovation of a 1920s-era factory building and an adjacent filling station and ice house that was last used as studio space for artists and musicians. The collection of buildings at the site had undergone many ad hoc and incremental transformations over their lifetimes, serving a range of light industrial, manufacturing, retail, and cultural occupancies. The renovation was designed with the goal of uniting the disparate built elements on the site, improving the experience of the building from the surrounding streets and parks, and updating the building to meet current city requirements for fire safety, accessibility, and resilience. The building was landmarked by the Cambridge Historical Commission during the course of the renovation, recognizing the cultural contributions to Cambridge history that were produced there over the decades.

Thank you to Charles Sullivan and the Cambridge Historical Commission for recognizing these transformative preservation projects!

 

MASS MoCA Turns 20!

Happy 20th Birthday, MASS MoCA!

Bruner/Cott has been working on the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art since its inception. Housed in a vast 17-acre industrial complex built in the late 1800s for the Arnold Print Works company, the museum was completed in three phases, initially opening to international acclaim in 1999 with 125,000 square feet. Today, the museum comprises 280,000 square feet of galleries, performing arts venues, video/multimedia spaces, and commercial rental units.

MASS MoCA has become ingrained in our firm’s history and has served as a model for other adaptive reuse projects. In a recent interview with ArchDaily, Bruner/Cott Principals Jason Forney, Jason Jewhurst, and Dana Kelly offer insider perspectives on the genesis of MASS MoCA.

Over the last thirty years, it has become a testing ground for our practice—in developing ways of weaving old and new together in a more dynamic way than it is typically done. Our co-founder, Simeon Bruner, and one of our principals, Henry Moss, began working with MASS MoCA in the 1980s. Their initial ideas evolved and became intrinsic to the next generation in our firm. Often, historical architecture is preserved as is or taken down to start building from scratch. Our goal is to keep the right amount of old and add the new so that the result is appropriate, sensitive, and coherent.

— Jason Forney, AIA, LEED AP, Principal

Read more, here.

 

 

 

Cambridge Historical Commission Honors Harvard Smith Campus Center

Congratulations to Harvard University for being selected to receive an award from the Cambridge Historical Commission for the restoration of the Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center!

The Cambridge Preservation Awards Program honors property owners who conserve and protect the city’s architecture.

This award will be presented at a ceremony and reception on May 16th which will showcase the project in a formal presentation.

Thank you, Cambridge Historical Commission and the City of Cambridge!

 

You can learn more about the Smith Campus Center here.

360° Views of Harvard’s Most Memorable Spaces

Outgoing Harvard President, Drew Faust, took some time to reflect on her favorite spaces on campus. She shared with The Harvard Gazette the places, times, and ways Harvard marked her, including times of joy, laughter, sorrow, and poignancy. From the recently-renovated Lavietes Basketball Pavilion to the Smith Campus Center currently under construction, Bruner/Cott is responsible for many of Faust’s favorite and most memorable spaces during her ten years as president. The following 360° videos will allow you to experience these projects through her eyes.

 

Lavietes Basketball Pavilion

“I remember very soon after I became president, attending a women’s basketball game and celebrating with them my ascension to female power.”

First constructed in 1926, Lavietes Pavilion is the second-oldest active basketball facility in the United States; a major goal of the project is to celebrate the intimacy and historic charm of the building and showcase the history of Harvard Basketball and Harvard Athletics. Bruner/Cott has been a part of the growth of the Lavietes Pavilion since its first renovation in the 1980s when it was the Briggs Athletic Center. Read more.

 

Memorial Hall 

“It’s hard for me to believe that this wonderful building and that wonderful space was left almost to disuse.”

In collaboration with Venturi, Scott Brown, Bruner/Cott restored the historic shell and upgraded the building to contemporary standards. The restored space boasts hammerbeam trusses, stained glass windows, stenciled ceiling details, walnut paneling, new flooring and custom-designed furniture. Bruner/Cott was responsible for the entire 15,000 sf food service operation, including a total kitchen redesign, new serveries, and Loker Student Commons on the lower level. Read more.

 

Knafel Center (Radcliffe Gymnasium)

“Radcliffe alums not only used that balcony as a track, they had to learn how to lower themselves on a rope from the balcony onto the floor because it was believed that it would be important for women to know how to use a rope to get out of a burning building.”

Radcliffe Gymnasium was designed in 1898 by McKim Mead & White as a gym for students at Radcliffe College. The reinterpreted gymnasium is now a lecture and event salon for the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study in Radcliffe Yard. The Gymnasium’s versatile, multi-use spaces are popular with the entire Harvard community. The large second-floor lecture space — used every day for informal gatherings and study — can be easily converted into a formal setting for social events, with full provisions for catering. The upper-level former running track is now a “walking and talking” track for discussions and informal viewing of presentations and lectures. Read more.

 

Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Campus Center

“A university-wide space, in which people could bump into each other, share ideas, find spaces in which to have meetings for their organizations and groups, and embody the sort of unity that I felt would strengthen the university.”

The 1960-65 Holyoke Center by Josep Lluis Sert in Harvard Square is undergoing a major transformation to attract and mix the varied constituencies within the university – faculty, undergraduates, staff, graduate students, and engaged visitors. Bruner/Cott is working with the Harvard client team and design architect, Hopkins Architects of London on extensive programming and sensitive transformation of this campus icon. Construction work, including façade restoration, additions, and interiors, began in the spring of 2016 and is slated for completion in 2018. Read more.

 

To read the entire Harvard Gazette article, click here. Congratulations to Drew Faust on a wonderful career at Harvard University!

Bruner/Cott Makes ARCHITECT Top 50

Of 149 firms that submitted entries, Bruner/Cott is thrilled to be named #14 overall in the 2017 Architect 50. This ranking is based on scores in three separate categories; business, sustainability, and design. From there, each firm’s performance is calculated relative to the performance of other firms, and ordered by highest composite score.

This year, Bruner/Cott scored a 260.5 overall, ranking 48 for business, 20 for sustainability, and 38 for design. This is a significant jump in rankings from previous years, and the firm is extremely grateful to be recognized for its hard work and overall growth.

Previous Years’ Rankings:

2017

  • Top 50 Overall: #14
  • Business: #48
  • Sustainability: #20
  • Design: #38

2016

  • Sustainability: #38

2015

  • Top 50 Overall: #46
  • Sustainability: #39

To learn more about the ARCHITECT methodology for computing this year’s ranking, click here.
To view Bruner/Cott’s firm page on the ARCHITECT 50 rankings, click here.

 

 

Feature by Henry Moss in Architecture Boston

Queen to Alice: “It’s a poor sort of memory that only works backwards.” Fifty years ago, few of us expected that the hearts of American cities would start to beat again. Our down

towns had sustained a continuous decline. There was little protection for the familiar, the recognizably historic, or the texture of active streetscapes — let alone the residents of Boston’s West End. The sense of loss over the demolition of landmark structures such as Pennsylvania Station concentrated emotional reactions to broader changes in our cities and towns. A righteous oppos

ition emerged, reinforced by the unpopularity of replacement buildings and the antiurban spatial economy of our automobile culture. Few people now realize how federal incentives to modernize the appearance of main street retail frontages dramatically affected American towns under the New Deal — or how unopposed those changes were…”

And so begins a feature in the Fall 2017 issue of ArchitectureBoston magazine, written by Bruner/Cott Principal, Henry Moss, AIA. This issue’s feature section was titled, “Second Look,” and included contributors who had written about these topics in years past. Henry originally wrote about preservation in the July/August 2006 “1976” issue of ArchitectureBoston. You can read the full article online or download a PDF version of the fall 2017 feature here.