Friday, May 30, 2014

The “Giant” in Our Backyard

A few months ago when we started construction in the basement of the
Kittredge House, we made an exciting discovery. The remnants of a Roxbury Puddingstone retaining wall were found in the basement. It’s hypothesized that this wall may be a relic of the original 1836 foundation of the building, from before the house was pivoted to face Linwood Street in the 1890’s. Unfortunately, the wall was located in what is now the new garden apartment, on the ground floor of the Kittredge House, and so it had to be removed. However, it didn’t go far. We re-used the stone to create a new retaining wall in the back of the renovated building. The discovery got us thinking about Roxbury Puddingstone, and what makes it so special (it is the State Rock of Massachusetts, after all).

Hayden Building Honored at State Awards Luncheon

Last week, the Hayden Building was one of a select few projects that was honored by the Massachusetts Historical Commission with a Preservation Award. HBI and our partners on the project, CUBE Design and Research and Marc Truant & Associates, were honored to receive such an award. We would like to thank the Massachusetts Historical Commission as well as Secretary of State, William Galvin for recognizing the Hayden Building with this important distinction.  

Friday, May 23, 2014

Freedom Trail Pop-Up Book in Kickstarter Mode

A couple of years ago, HBI posted a fascinating You Tube video on the Freedom Trail Pop Up Book developed by designer Denise Price.  Denise has significantly refined the book and is getting it ready for publication, hoping for help with initial publication costs through   Have a look at the new product here and see if you can help “kickstart” a extraordinary representation of Boston’s revolutionary trail.

Students at Codman Academy Share Codman Square History in the D-Tour

Seniors at Codman Academy Charter Public School organized their own tour of Codman Square in May to highlight the community’s assets and history.  It builds on "My Dot Tour," a youth tour of historic and cultural strengths in Dorchester's Fields Corner, developed in 2010 by a local collaborative including HBI.

Seniors at Codman Academy Charter Public School organized a tour of Codman Square to highlight the community’s assets and history in reaction to a French travel advisory warning French tourists about walking in the neighborhoods of Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan. Students’ efforts to convince the French Consulate to retract the warning made national news last fall and students have since been working to encourage people to visit their community through a walking tour cleverly named “The D-Tour”.  

A tour for community stakeholders was organized last Friday (May 16th), and was attended by representatives from the Mayor’s Office, Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development, Codman Square Health Center, Friends of the Codman Square LibrarySecond Church, and the Institute for International Urban Development, as well as several teachers and administrators from Codman Academy. Students presented the history of various buildings (Great Hall, Second Church) and the history and missions of different community organizations (Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation, Strive) while describing what make these places community assets.

The team of teachers, students, and other community stakeholders involved in the tour are currently seeking grant funding to develop physical installations to mark the tour sites and a web-based platform to host research and engage visitors.

Visit The D-Tour’s Facebook page for updates on this initiative! 

Friday, May 16, 2014

From the Parthenon to the Kittredge House; HBI's Council of Advisors Celebrates the Greek Revival

HBI’s Council of Advisors and friends gathered for their spring meeting May 13th and the focus was the Alvah Kittredge House (1836) and the classical architecture that inspired the American Greek Revival period in which it was built.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Eastern Bank Joins in Celebration of Kittredge House's Near Completion

Eastern Bank’s President and Chief Operating Officer, Robert Rivers, paid a visit to the Alvah Kittredge House this week to check in on progress of the historic property’s rehabilitation.  Eastern Bank recently presented HBI with a $20,000 Partnership Grant from its charitable foundation toward restoration of the 1836 Kittredge House in Roxbury.  Eastern is also primary lender to the $3.8 million rehabilitation project, expected to be completed in June 2014.

Joined by several HBI board members and staff, Mr. Rivers previewed the five apartments under construction in the Kittredge House and an overview of the project’s preservation elements.  On hand for the photo were, left to right, Jeffrey Morgan, Lisa Lewis, Robert Rivers, Alex Krieger, Emily Axelrod, Susan Silberberg, Paul McDonough, Matthew Kiefer, and Kathy Kottaridis.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Before and After at the Vertullo Building

Quite a bit of work has been going on at the Vertullo Building in Hyde Park, and it's about time that we shared some of the great progress being made by our team. The most notable change is the extension of the storefronts around the corner of Pierce Street. The newly rehabilitated space will be a focal point for passers by, and hence a fantastic space for retail. However, this is not all that has been spiffed up. The new lighting features are in, as are the new half-round gutters. Check out some of these great before and afters: 

Before: The windows on the side of the Vertullo building have been boarded over.
After: The rehabbed storefront stretches around the corner onto Pierce Street. 

Friday, May 2, 2014

Springtime at the Kittredge House

It’s been about four months since we checked in at the Kittredge House, and there has been a lot of progress made. Now that drywall is up, and the kitchen cabinets are in, the spaces are really starting to feel like apartments. Some of the more recent big developments have been the construction of the back patio, and the puddingstone retaining wall (more on that in a different post) as well as the tile work in the bathrooms, and the installation of the bathroom vanities. On the outside of the building Metric has installed the new entablature, which will soon be sitting on six beautiful columns. The columns, which are a mixture of new and rehabilitated, will be arriving in June.

The newest video of the Kittredge House is taken from the same spot that the first video was taken, back in December. It is at the doorway, looking into one of the second floor apartments. This apartment is one of the two affordable apartments that will be in the Kittredge House.

With two months until our date of completion, the apartments are really coming together. The team is picking out paint colors and the phones have been ringing with those interested in renting. If you are interested in living in one of the five beautiful apartments in the Kittredge House, call Certified Property Management at 617-738-6606.