Hayden Building by CUBE

Multidisciplinary architecture practice CUBE design+research completed the rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of the iconic H.H. Richardson’s Hayden Building in downtown Boston, as the architects transformed it from a five-story office building to a multi-family housing with ground floor retail. CUBE undertook a $4M renovation and reuse of this national landmark which has sat vacant since a fire gutted the building in 1985.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

The architects maintained virtually intact the iconic façade of the historic building, while they created a set of interior spaces that present impeccably contemporary aesthetics and efficient spatial organization. Therefore, the -1875 built- iconic structure, retains its strong presence in the city’s urban fabric, whereas it provides its residents with first-class, modern accommodation.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

The Hayden building’s original design features massive masonry walls and a great multiplicity of windows that provide ample natural light internally; both key elements to its rehabilitation process.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Acknowledging the edges as the dominant feature of Richardson’s building, the exterior walls are accentuated and thickened with ancillary program features; thus, prompting the residents to engage with the Hayden’s rehabilitated brownstone facade.

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

The Hayden Building is where old meets the new and together they define a series of contemporary territories, as it is successfully presented at the entry stair;  an space activated by juxtaposing historical elements against the masonry party wall.  Eventually, the building doubles as a historical ‘depository’; the residents are welcomed with a didactic and functional interior that reveals the physical history of the building and its eclectic past.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

While the building keeps its external monumental and stark feel,  the interior demonstrates a rather airy and spacious feeling.  The original large window cuts empower the essence of openness while they allow the modern interior ambiance to be in context with the exterior  historic architecture layers.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

All flats feature comfortable and flexible interior spaces, along with a distinctive industrial feel.  Key structural elements of the past- the exposed brick walls- blend in harmoniously with the newly inserted materials, such as metal and hardwood.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Moreover, interior spaces feature ‘smart’ furniture such as  custom built-ins that guide you from entry to living areas while they provide extra storage space as well as they add privacy from the street.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

The Hayden building is unquestionably a winning rehabilitation project; a fine example of how to bring back to life a historic architectural landmark, and make it relevant to modern-day demands of inhabitation. CUBE’s design is an honest, immaculately well-thought architectural intervention that speaks fluent elegance and urban sophistication, giving Boston one of its most celebrated buildings back.

Hayden Building by CUBE

©John Horner Photography

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

Hayden Building by CUBE

© CUBE

 

Words: Ivi Vassilopoulou

 


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