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Old 05-15-2016, 10:34 AM   #21
goldenretrievers
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End



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Old 12-04-2016, 11:29 AM   #22
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

biking by this yesterday, saw no signs of progress
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Old 12-04-2016, 11:49 AM   #23
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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biking by this yesterday, saw no signs of progress
The same developer is bogged down in abutter/community/BPDA negotiations re: 533 Washington St. aka FELT project and there's been nothing heard of about that one for a good long while, for a project now proposed nearly 18 months ago... almost certainly a coincidence, but perhaps worth keeping in mind.
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Old 03-20-2017, 07:16 AM   #24
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Old 03-20-2017, 07:44 AM   #25
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

Ouch, this is a mess. Those are really ugly balcony rails, and the brickwork, while having nice detail, looks like the color scheme out of a 1950's gymnasium. Maybe I'm missing something here??
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:33 AM   #26
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

The railings read like barbed wire. Awful.
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:55 AM   #27
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

Early contender for "worst of the year" in the high-end area category.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:02 AM   #28
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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Early contender for "worst of the year" in the high-end area category.
There's something "foreign" about this. Not sure quite how to put it into words. Looks like something you'd see in the background of a movie about poor people on some other continent.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:15 AM   #29
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

I like to see architects be daring with details like railings, so I was trying to give it a chance and like them, but .... I also kept coming back to thinking it reminded me of sloppily applied concertina wire.

Also, is it even code compliant? In some pictures, the reflection in windows makes it hard to read what is rail and what is reflection of rail in windows. But the lowest picture is at a sharp enough angle to reduce that. On the lower pic, look at the fourth floor, far end from camera: I'm pretty sure I'm seeing an opening there that a small crawling toddler could crawl right through, without even needing to wriggle a bit. When I look at the other pics and really try to weed out the reflections, I think I'm seeing other such too-large apertures.

And this is one case where code compliance is not at all some abstract thing. Wee toddlers who have just learned to crawl will do so through any opening through which they can fit, it's like a red flag in front of a bull, and they have not yet developed the necessary fear of (or respect for) heights. My kids may have long outgrown the crawling stage but I still have the worry instinct for this sort of risk. Those railings set off my alarms.

It could be fixed by just adding in a few more rolls of razor wire, er, I mean, a few more decorative hoops.
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:51 AM   #30
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

I think a toddler would see that railing and think "scary!" and stay away.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:08 PM   #31
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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It will be worth it. It will be a gem.

cca
Paging CCA...???
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:17 PM   #32
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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I think a toddler would see that railing and think "scary!" and stay away.
Well, I sort of misspoke when I said "crawling toddler". It's not the true toddlers I worry about, if one defines "toddler" as a child who just learned to stay on two feet and toddles rather than walks. You're right, many would be terrified to even get near that railing.

I'm worried about the younger ones who have learned to crawl but not yet walk, and who crawl relentlessly. They go through a phase during which their brains only have room for stranger fear - fear of strange faces - and not even all of them have that. Everything else? Heights? Sticking every damned thing they get hold of into their mouths? Sharp objects? Electrical outlets, and the myriad things (some of them conductive to electricity) that they can jam into them if they aren't covered? Their brains have literally not yet developed the capacity to recognize those things / activities as dangers, and hence they seem unbelievably reckless. It's not fearlessness or recklessness, it's just pure non-stop curiosity. We don't have a cute name for that age, they're aren't really toddler yet. In my marriage we used to call it the "oh isn't she so cute HOLY SHIT WHAT IS SHE DOING!?!?!?" phase. And there is, sad to say, a lag when kids have gotten into that pattern and the parents have so far only seen the "oh cute" part but not yet the "HOLY SHIT" part. Every parent has at least one scary memory around this.

The code restrictions on railing openings are written specifically around the danger to that age of kid. I've seen inspectors on multi-family properties red-tag units that were missing deck railings and had small kids in the units: "put them up in a hotel at your expense until it's fixed, or I'm gonna really go looking for violations and red-tag every unit where I find one, just fix it now!"

I can't tell from these pics if those openings are really too large for code, but I hope to hell hope the building inspectors notice it and check it.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:19 PM   #33
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

This is just... eh

Like West said, architects should absolutely be (even a little) daring with some details of the building (such as the railings) but they turned out to be a fail. I like the details in the brickwork but then they just fell through by not making it cohesive. +1 to bigpicture.. it does look like a 50's gymnasium.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:19 PM   #34
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

[quote=Shepard;290337]Paging CCA...???[/QUOTE

I am sorry to say that I am not able to go to the mat for this one. The concept is still quite nice ... but I have to agree that there is something off with the execution. The angled facade does not help the screen be the promenent thing, and the screen is not enough there - to be there (if you know what I mean). I dont make the connection to barbed wire but I do agree this was better in concept than in reality.

I still want to see it finished off.

KVA, while conceptual, are very good designers. Don't vilify them.

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Old 03-20-2017, 01:30 PM   #35
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shepard View Post
Paging CCA...???
I am sorry to say that I am not able to go to the mat for this one. The concept is still quite nice ... but I have to agree that there is something off with the execution. The angled facade does not help the screen be the promenent thing, and the screen is not enough there - to be there (if you know what I mean). I dont make the connection to barbed wire but I do agree this was better in concept than in reality.

I still want to see it finished off.

KVA, while conceptual, are very good designers. Don't vilify them.

cca
The railing is definitely a case of "it looks better in elevation in CAD than it does in practice."

It's not just the rings, it's the material thickness. It's too thin. The white brick facade (which I actually like) has a thick, bold quality to it. The railings/balcony treatment needs to carry that same weight/boldness. The dainty railing screen just feels like a flimsy afterthought.

I cannot imagine that KVA is satisfied with the way this turned out. They will learn from this. Architecture is an iterative process. You try something and sometimes it works and sometimes it fails.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:59 PM   #36
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

A simple aesthetic fix could be the following:

Cover the floorplates facing the street in the same hardwood as the recessed balcony walls (not sure why that wasn't done to begin with). Then. all window trims should be made dark gray. Now, color the balcony fence bone white to enhance contrast and visual interest, give it some greater levity and remove the razor-wire association.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:03 PM   #37
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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It's not just the rings, it's the material thickness. It's too thin.
Yes! This. The looped rings design is fine, but it to wiry.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:09 PM   #38
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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There's something "foreign" about this. Not sure quite how to put it into words. Looks like something you'd see in the background of a movie about poor people on some other continent.
I think this is a great observation. In places like Sao Paolo, they have perfected the marriage of fencing and luxury. To me, this is very much a Sao Paulo residential building done up with some contemporary nods on the cheap.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:36 PM   #39
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

Oof. Even with normal or well-executed railings this would still hurt.


The big horizontal elements in the balconies don't continue through the brickwork. The windows in the brick on the right are totally unbalanced in the rest of the facade. There's no cornice, though every other building in the neighborhood has one - and instead there's another free-floating section of railing. Nothing continues to the ground level.

This really makes my eyes hurt.
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Old 03-20-2017, 02:39 PM   #40
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Re: Condo + Retail Project | 124-126 Salem Street | North End

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Cover the floorplates facing the street in the same hardwood as the recessed balcony walls (not sure why that wasn't done to begin with). Then. all window trims should be made dark gray. Now, color the balcony fence bone white to enhance contrast and visual interest, give it some greater levity and remove the razor-wire association.
Pretty much my thoughts exactly. The floorplates are the weakest part. Putting the wood on them would really emphasize the floor plates and give something to contrast the screen with.
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