BPDA announces expansion of Boston Civic Design Commission
Jan 13, 2021
The Boston Planning & Development Agency (BPDA) today announced the expansion of the Boston Civic Design Commission (BCDC) with the appointment of two additional members by Mayor Martin J. Walsh. Jonathan Evans of MASS Design Group and Mimi Garza Love of Utile will fill newly created positions, and Kathy Kottaridis of Historic Boston Inc. will replace the seat being vacated by the retirement of Paul McDonough as the member representing expertise in historic preservation.
“By expanding the Boston Civic Design Commission, we are continuing to build on our work to create a more inclusive, equitable BPDA and City of Boston,” said BPDA Director Brian Golden. “I welcome Jonathan, Mimi, and Kathy, and look forward to the unique perspectives and experience they will bring to our work. I thank Paul McDonough for his many years of valuable service to the Commission and Boston’s built environment and public realm.”
The expansion of the Commissioners from 11 to 13 will help bring new perspectives to the BCDC and responds to the ongoing pace of development in Boston by helping ensure that there is a quorum at all meetings. Under the change, at least seven of the 13 Commissioners must be professionals in the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, or urban design.
The BCDC, managed by the BPDA’s Urban Design Department, is charged with examining the aesthetics of proposed development projects and ensuring that the projects have a positive impact on Boston's public realm. This includes the review of large projects over 100,000 gross square feet, projects of special significance, civic projects, and district design guidelines.
The BPDA held a public meeting on October 22, 2020 to discuss amending Article 28 of the Boston Zoning Code to expand the number of Commissioners, and the text amendment was approved by the BPDA Board in November 2020, and by the Boston Zoning Commission in December 2020. To learn more about the BCDC, read the 2019 BCDC Annual Report.
Jonathan is a Senior Architect at MASS Design Group. Prior to MASS in 2018, Jonathan designed and managed architectural and urban design projects largely focused on public interest design. This ranged from affordable multi-family housing to urban design and planning work for non-profits and public agencies. He received his Masters in Architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design where he was awarded the Alpha Rho Chi medal for leadership, service and promise of professional merit.
Mimi Garza Love
Mimi Garza Love is a Principal at Utile with over 30 years of experience in architecture, interior design, and campus planning. Utile thrives on solving complex urban problems in intelligent, pragmatic ways. Ms. Love’s work is focused on the relationship of individual buildings to their larger context. Her project experience includes the Boston Harbor Islands Pavilion on the Rose Kennedy Greenway, the Richard Ortner Studio Building for Boston Conservatory at Berklee, and the Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library. Ms. Love also led campus master plans for The Park School, Belmont Day School, and Belmont Hill School. In addition, she served as Harvard Design School’s Interior Design Owner Representative for several years and co-authored Color Space Style, a reference book on interior design. Ms. Love was a board member of the Boston Preservation Alliance, and is currently on the BSA Honors & Awards Committee. She also serves on the Board of Trustees at Beaver Country Day School, where she is the Chair of the Capital Projects Committee. Previously, Ms. Love worked at KPF in New York and Machado Silvetti Associates in Boston. She received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Texas in Austin.
Kathy Kottaridis joined Historic Boston Inc. (HBI) as its Executive Director in 2007. A patient investor in the redevelopment and reuse of endangered historic buildings, HBI is recognized by its partners and collaborators for high quality projects that reactivate historic buildings projects for new uses. Under Kathy’s leadership, HBI has undertaken $25 million in project investments, transforming eight abandoned historic structures into new mixed use developments and leveraging considerable private investment.
Among these are the rehabilitation of the City's oldest remaining fire house for HBI’s headquarters in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood, and the redevelopment of architect H.H. Richardson’s only remaining commercial building in Boston for mixed-use housing and retail development. Kathy’s career includes many years devoted to public and non-profit service. She served as Director of Economic Development at the former Boston Redevelopment Authority (now Boston Planning & Development Agency), Director of the City of Boston’s Office of Business Development, and was the founding director of Boston Main Streets, the first city-wide Main Streets program in the country. A native of Dover, New Hampshire, Kathy holds a BA in History from the University of New Hampshire, an MA in Historic Preservation from Boston University, and an MPA from Harvard’s Kennedy School.