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Downtown Waterfront Activation and Public Realm Draft Plan [Video]


An updated draft of the Downtown Waterfront Activation and Public Realm Plan was presented this week by Utile’s Matthew Littell to the advisory committee tasked with recommending actions to the Boston Redevelopment Authority for the planning area that runs from Long Wharf to the Hook Lobster site. This is the second iteration in the draft document after an initial round of feedback from last month.

The vision of the plan encompasses the Downtown Waterfront and associated Rose Kennedy Greenway parks as “Boston’s Front Door” and seeks to maximize public resources that have come about after decades of planning and design work in the area.

Key “Vision” bullet points presented in the draft:

  • A waterfront district accessible to all by bike, transit, foot and boat.
  • Clearly defined connections to the Greenway, the harbor, Quincy Market, the North End, the Financial District and the Innovation District.
  • A district and watersheet that are resilient to climate change, designed to be built to withstand inundation and storm surges.
  • Four-season destination and programming that are welcoming to Bostonians and visitors of all ages.
  • A district and watersheet that is flexible enough to accommodate innovative uses in the future.
  • A strong identity for this section of the waterfront, it is a destination in and of itself.

Each of these points was reviewed and related to the individual parcels in the planning area. View the video above for more details.

Comments from the advisory committee were generally positive and certainly more so than from the first iteration of the draft report. The last slide generated some discussion about possible “out of the box” public realm ideas that have been tried out in other cities.

The next Municipal Harbor Planning Advisory Committee meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 3-5pm at Atlantic Wharf, 290 Congress Street.