Fan Pier Master Plan+ expand detail
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
19 acres / 7 hectares
The Fan Pier master plan was designed to extend the character of the downtown Boston to an 18.5-acre (7.5-hectare) site on Boston Harbor. The plan called for extending South Boston’s street grid through the site, creating traditionally-sized blocks to define Fan Pier as part of the city.
The project’s buildings were to be designed by several architects, giving the area an architectural diversity often lacking in large developments. Urban design guidelines were intended to create a unified development while encouraging this variety. The guidelines specified building setbacks and horizontal articulation to create a cohesive ensemble of buildings and spaces.
The site was organized to accommodate four office buildings comprising 120, 800 square meters (1.3 million square feet) of commercial space, three residential buildings comprising 71,540 square meters (770,000 square feet) of residential space, an 815-room hotel, and below-grade parking for 2,500 cars. The plan proposed more than three acres of landscaped, tree-filled public space and pedestrian walks. A public park was planned to overlook the waterfront and downtown Boston, and a promenade extending Boston’s Harbor Park would wrap the perimeter of the development along the harbor edge and both sides of the canal.
A central element of the design is the creation of a 25-meter-wide (83-foot) navigable canal, oriented to frame views of the historic Custom House Tower and lined with shops and restaurants. The canal’s walls would be faced with granite block salvaged from the site. Pedestrian and vehicular bridges would cross the canal, extending neighborhood streets and the Harbor Park promenade into the site.