Sunday, February 22, 2009

Tech Towns' Changing Plan

Tech Town has a new plan. This is probably old news, but it makes official the removal of the historic Frigidaire loft factory as well as removing certain landscaping, parking, and site planning features.

Here is a comparison of the original "nice-to-have" plan, and the latest "closer-to-reality" plan (you can click on it to enlarge)

And the changes, keyed to the numbers on the upper map:

1. Removal of parking structures and replacement with parking lots. On the Webster Street side the screen offie building is removed and the lot is open to the street (behind a tree screen)

2. Removal of walking path following the old railroad siding to the river. This was sort of a neat feature, esp. since it was a landscape reference to the orginal site use.

3. Redesign of the riverfront park. The original design focused on the old Frigidaire plant and seemed to have more elaborate boundary conditions. The plan has been simplified and the focus is on a proposed amphitheatre. Not too bad a change, but we'll see if this park is really developed as nice as even the revision.

4. Removal of contextual building forms. This was really unfortunate as the concept seemed to be to mimic the massing of the orginal Frigidaire buildings with new structures, which was integrated with the lanscape via the railroad spur walkway. Instead the design defaults to a standard spec office box form.

5. Demolition of the old Frigidaire loft factory. Cost too much to restore to offices so they demolish it. One of the cooler features of the orginal design replaced with large floor plate facility. Oh well. (Not sure how tall that new building will be).

6. Water features replaced by parking.

7. De-emphasis of central mall and highly detailed open space in front of the former Frigdaire loft factory. Since the centerpiece of the design has gone away the open space in front doesnt have to be as special.

One could probably say more. Here is the revised design, enlarged:
Still something a cut above the generic suburban office park for this region, but probably not too different from the quality of site planning one finds at Research Park (which this complex will be competing with). The proposal seems to be evolving into a denser version of Research Park, set on a grid.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Big surprise. AGAIN.