Avenue of the Arts Design Guidelines Study

The portion of Huntington Avenue located between Massachusetts Avenue and Longwood Avenue, also referred to as the “Avenue of the Arts”, is home to many of Boston’s greatest institutions dedicated to fine arts, architecture, music, theater, and education. These institutions include the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston University’s Huntington Theater Company, New England Conservatory of Music, Northeastern University, the Wentworth Institute of Technology, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and the Museum of Fine Arts.

The objective of the Avenue of the Arts Design Guidelines is to provide clear direction to individual projects as they progress from a conceptual planning stage into the Article 80B Large Project Review process. The guidelines will be a set of physical design parameters and standards which will help the City and the institutions along Huntington Avenue achieve a high quality and pedestrian oriented public realm and urban environment. They will identify ways to enhance the physical quality and character of the area and define ways to balance individual institutional identity and the definition of the Avenue of the Arts more broadly.

While the areas surrounding the Avenue of the Arts will be analyzed and understood for context, the goal of the study will be to provide detailed Design Guidelines for parcels which front onto Huntington Avenue or have a significant presence in the area. The Guidelines will address urban design issues such as setbacks, massing, building orientation, open space, relationship to context, and environmental impacts. The various components of the public realm, including landscape, streetscape elements, signage, and lighting will also be addressed. In addition, the Guidelines will analyze possible future building sites along the corridor regarding their potential uses or densities.

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