Iconic Buildings Offer Historic Views | Boston & Hartford | October 2008

Two projects – one in Boston, the other in Hartford – have recently provided me with very privileged and historic views.

The Old State House and Boston Massacre Site, Boston
In June, 2008, objectIDEA participated in a study with the Boston Historical Society to evaluate the visitors' experience at Boston's Old State House. The study paved the way for an interpretive planning exercise wherein recommendations were made to restructure the circulation of the visitors' experience in the building, and focus the institution's single, emblematic communication aim: This building, once a monument to English rule, is now a monument to American resistance. 

As the interpretive plan took shape, so did the Old State House itself, as it was undergoing an extensive architectural restoration as well. Prior to the re-gilding of the dome, I was invited to climb the scaffolding and inspect the cupola and dome and, in doing so, was rewarded with a view of details (including Boston's first weathervane) and vistas that few people have seen in quite some time.
Coltsville National Historic Landmark, Hartford
In October, 2008, I was invited as part of a consultancy taskforce hired to evaluate Coltsville National Historic Landmark in Hartford, CT. The thrust of the effort was to evaluate the site's potential as a host for a visitor center and interpret the history of business ingenuity and precision manufacturing in a young America.

The Colt firearms complex, affectionately known as Coltsville, is marked by one of the most iconic buildings in all of Hartford: the grand East Armory with its gold, star-spangled, blue onion dome. A view from the dome reveals the spread of Coltsville and its relationship to the city and the Connecticut River. We hope to extend an invitation to the general public to appreciate and contemplate this view in the near future.