Hall of Fame Nominees

George_Apley

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Members are encouraged to nominate an existing building, park, or other piece of infrastructure in the Boston area that they believe makes a positive and integral contribution to the built or urban environment. Nominate features that you believe deserve special recognition and possess attributes worthy of emulation in future projects.

There will be three new inductees in 2020.

Previous Inductees

2019

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Prudential Tower
Longfellow Bridge
Massachusetts State House
Zakim Bridge

2012
Post Office Square
Old State House
Public Garden

2011
Ames Building
Faneuil Hall Marketplace
The Last Tenement

2010
South Station
Boston Public Library (McKim Building)
Trinity Church

2009
Design Research Building
Custom House
Comm. Ave. Mall

2008
New John Hancock
Christian Science Center
Rowes Wharf
 
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I'd like to nominate my personal favorite, and one of the most stately Romanesque Revival buildings out there, The Grain Exchange.

grain-and-flour-exchange-building-in-boston-massachusetts-usa-CE955W.jpg


And also the Berkeley Building/Old John Hancock. Few buildings exude "Boston" more than this one, and knowing how to decode the weather beacon is one of the great Bostonian shibboleths.

Old_Hancock_Building.jpg
 
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I am just rehashing my nominations from last year because none won:

1) THE. WINTHROP. BUILDING!!!!!! - best building in Boston hands down and and it is frankly criminal it isn't in the hall of fame. the elegant curve, the beautiful color combination, the way it perfectly fits its site contextually. The Susan Lucci of buildings in Boston.

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2) Harvard Square Station - An under appreciated gem of an interior. One of the most beautiful stations in the system, the large spaces, the curving lines, the handicapped accessibility, the public art.

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3)New State House - Quite possibly the most iconic Boston building. Bulfinch's finest building, the gold dome alone should have gotten it on this list in the past not to mention it's interiors. P.S. the Sacred Cod that hangs inside is one of the most amazing objects in the entire city.

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4) The Blackstone Block - quintessential old Boston architecture. the cluttered block shows the city that was and the fine grained buildings ask to be studied up close whenever you talk by.

1200px-Union_Oyster_Boston.jpg
 
oh wait! the State House got in last year! strike that!

I replace that nomination with the quirkiest building in the city, one of of my absolute loves, the Milk Bottle at the Children's museum.

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here is a great article about it and the amazing history behind it
 
I nominate Deer Island Waste Water Treatment Plant. I feel like 2020 was its year.

As we all know, Boston use to have one of the filthiest urban harbors in the world... and today it has one of the cleanest. Although numerous environmental regulations and investments can be cited for this transformation, I think experts would agree that Deer Island was the key to making that transformation possible. The cleaning of the harbor timed with the completion of the Big Dig this past generation reconnected Bostonians with the waterfront and made sellable the investment in billions of dollars of private development that have enhanced the built and urban environment. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic we've learned from public health experts not only how important access to clean water and air are for supporting our health, but also how valuable the data on sewage flowing through Deer Island has been to preparing statewide policy experts in proactively understanding and battling this disease. The ongoing MWRA Wastewater COVID-19 Tracking Project shares data collected from our shit waste processed at Deer Island with experts at Departments of Public Health and Environmental Protection, helping inform critical decisions that may have saved many lives.

Aesthetically-speaking, the 'Eggs' are pretty iconic and recognizable for any person flying into Logan Airport. We've been graced by several stunning skyline photos/vistas taken at Deer Island. And, personally-speaking, I was particularly grateful in 2020 to have the beautiful 2-mile loop around Deer Island to reconnect with nature, contemplate the uncertainty ahead of us, and find inspiration in a place that literally turned something shitty into something beautiful.
 
I like all of those including the eggs. How about grandfathering buildings like the Old South Meetinghouse, King's Chapel, and the Old North Church into any honorary category. They are architecturally significant historic buildings that have somehow survived the wrecking ball. Maybe we could do one honorary induction a year?
 

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