Initial Concept | As the cultural and retail center of Cambridge, Harvard Square is a landmark abundant with history and street life. The extension of the MBTA's Red Line subway route west of the city required the excavation of all streets and sidewalks in the Square for tunnel construction. This disrupted the Square, but also presented the opportunity to re-design the site to enhance pedestrian amenities with high quality and durable materials.
Lasting Impact | The extensive use of brick and granite for seatwalls and pavements, cast iron site furnishings, and 70 large street trees reflects the high expectations of Harvard University, Harvard Square shop owners, the City of Cambridge, and area residents for a quality urban space with minimal maintenance requirements. Additional challenges were presented by the need for surface restoration over new and existing subsurface tunnel structures.Client | Skidmore, Owings & Merrill