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Datum: student journal of architecture

Article Title

Boundary Waters

Abstract

Today, Boston is confronted with three major urban issues each at a different scale: a defunct vestige of the past, a transforming seaport district and an inevitable rising sea level. Each of these urgent confrontations asks Boston to change its disposition of land expansionism and re-examine its narrative of urban development. The Northern Avenue Bridge rests at the nexus of these issues, no longer the conduit of urban progress but now as a part of the problem: a sentimental urban relic that consumes significant resources to maintain its decay. With Boston's rapidly changing urban frontier, we find opportunity to re-activate the bridge by implanting an experimental music hall, a program inherently flexible to music's constant shifting frontier. This architectural intervention transforms the infrastructure from a commercial conduit to a cultural container that responds to the evolving conditions of the city. This coupling of infrastructure from a commercial conduit to a cultural container that responds to the evolving conditions of the city. This coupling of infrastructure and architecture seeks to go beyond simply restoring the bridge's relevance in today's city by equipping it to serve again as a catalyst in the development of the future city. Through this, we establish the Northern Avenue Bridge as Boston's cultural palimpsest.

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