United States

The Viridian

Boston, United States
Bruner/Cott & Associates

The Viridian

Like many other cities, Boston currently experiences a densification of its urban core. The effect of this is clearly visible in Fenway Park, which used to be a predominantly low-rise district. The contrast between the 20-storey Viridian, named after a chrome green pigment, and its two-storey neighbours is indicative of the scale of the transformation which is taking place there.
Bruner/Cott Architects and Planners have carefully mitigated this shift in dimensions by dividing up the building into smaller volumes. Moreover, by including programme which benefits the community, they have ensured that the building becomes an integral part of the neighbourhood.

The building has glass balcony screens whose colour comes close to the viridian it is named after, but it isn’t this green that is determining the overall impression of this architecture. Crucial for the appearance of the building is the subdued cladding in terra-cotta tiles of AGROB BUCHTAL. The Viridian consists of a podium with retail, the Fenway Community Centre, and a large three-storey lobby. Above this podium are two towers with 342 apartments, ranging from micro units to three-bedrooms, catering for a diverse demographics of professionals, students, young families and empty-nesters.

Between the underground parking and the communal rooftop terraces on the fifteenth and twentieth floors, the Viridian also contains a fitness centre, resident lounges, and two ‘work labs’ with computer bars and conference rooms.
To mitigate this sizable addition to cityscape, Bruner/Cott Architects and Planners have not only broken up the volume in smaller ones, but also created a variation in colour and composition to set them even more apart. Slight colour variations of the tiles within the main volume help to further scale down the building and to enliven its architecture.

Each volume is covered in a terra-cotta rain screen in different natural earthy colours, which harmonize with the range of reds, browns, and yellows of Boston’s traditional buildings in brick. While the Viridian is in every sense the product of the twenty-first century, its reliance on the enduring quality of ceramic products situates this architecture in a venerable tradition of timeless city building.