No Building is an Island, 2015, Semifinalist Awardee

Role: Architect, resilience strategies

Harvard GSD Project team: Thaddeus Pawlowski (coordinator), Jonathan Goldman (urban planning, finance), Dave Hampton (architecture, resilience strategies), Stephanie Hsia (graphics), Jared Katseff (finance), Ho-Ting Liu (landscape architecture), Nupoor Monani (urban design), Kira Sargent (landscape architecture), Jeenal Sawla (urban design), Jon Springfield (urban planning), Karno Widjaja (renewable energy strategies), Lindsay Woodson (planning)

Consultants: Steven Apfelbaum (ecological restoration), Nancy Seasholes (historical research)

An interdisciplinary team from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design worked over the course of 8 months to develop entries for the Boston Harbor Now and Boston Planning Development Agency (formerly BRA)-sponsored Boston Living with Water competition. Master of Design studies, landscape architecture, architecture, urban design, and Loeb Fellows rotated to work on each of the three site/scales in Boston:

1.     Building (North End)

2.     Neighborhood (Fort Point District)

3.     Infrastructure (Morrissey Boulevard)

We self-organized into teams to develop entries for the Phase I submission. ‘No Building is an Island’—selected as a semifinalist entry—allowing our team to further refine initial ideas into a final submission, which downplayed eye-catching design for process and policy interventions. We proposed urban coastal climate adaptation through innovative scalable (and replicable) financing strategies and policy interventions such as Massachusetts Chapter 91 and City of Boston Articles 37 (Green Building Guidelines) and Article 80 (large project development review process):

·       Resilience Reportcard – raises public risk awareness to create a market for resilience

·       State initiatives – help citizens pay for risk insurance and local resiliency upgrades

·       Boston recovery program – allow ground-floor flood retrofits and vertical expansion

·       North End vision – long-term investment in public infrastructure which connects vibrant street life to an enhanced and expanded publicly-accessible water’s edge.

Lessons learned

So… we didn’t win.


Coming soon…