BVHDC Hears Second Advisory Review for Rooftop Addition at 95-97 Broadway

The Bay Village Historic District Commission (BVHDC) on November 9 heard a second advisory review for the proposed rooftop addition at 95-97 Broadway.

Last month, the design team was asked to return with renderings of the addition from different perspectives as well as different options for the windows.

Meichi Peng of Meichi Peng Design Studio explained that the proposed addition would be set back, and spoke about the existing windows on the building.

“Currently, there’s really no rhythm,” Peng said. She presented several different options for the windows on the addition, as well as showed the addition from different angles as requested by the Commission. The original window proposal was for square windows, but more rectangular ones were proposed this time.

The proposed addition will be clad in metal paneling in graphite gray and matte black colors, as well as an aluminum cladded window system. The proposed deck will be made of a slate gray composite material with powder coated steel railings, Peng said.

After proposing several options for the windows, Peng said she liked the fourth option for windows the best, as she said they relate to the existing building, “but a little bit larger in scale; proportion.”

Commissioner Anne Kilguss said that there isn’t “a straight line down to the ground on Winchester,” but on the Broadway side that is more evident with the windows and the way they line up with the ones on the existing building.

Peng said that the design team wanted to adjust the scale but “we also respect the material” and are aware of the setback with the addition.

Commissioner Tom Hotaling said that it is a “great leap forward here” to switch to a more rectangular window versus the originally proposed square ones.

Peng was asked why she prefers the fourth option over the second one, and she said that while the two are similar, it doesn’t quite have the proportions the fourth one has. “It feels to me like it’s going to be a mistake,” she said.

“This is a new floor on a historic building,” Hotaling said, and “from a preservation standpoint,” it’s “often recommended not to mimic what happens elsewhere.”

Commissioner Ruth Knopf said she liked the fourth option as well, as it “looks lighter” and “doesn’t feel like it’s weighing down what’s there.”

Joe Cornish, Director of Design Review for the Boston Landmarks Commission, said that “I do agree with option four. It’s important for the addition to be respectful of the base but to read as an addition. I think you’ve accomplished it with option four.”

Cornish told the applicant that once a zoning variance is granted, an application for a design review from the BVHDC can be filed, which would lead to a vote on the final design for the addition.

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