Consultants join HBI in an assessment of the Charlestown Pumping Station for potential reuse

Consultants join HBI in an assessment of the Charlestown Pumping Station for potential reuse

Historic Boston has begun assessing the condition of the Charlestown Pumping Station with the help of our talented team of consultants.  Feldman Geospatial visited the building recently to conduct a laser scan of the interior and exterior of the building, which will result in floor plans, elevations and dimensions for conceptual planning by Hacin Architects.

On December 15th, HBI joined John Wathne of Structures North Consulting Engineers, Scott Thomson of Hacin Architects, and Maureen Cavanaugh and Gretchen Pineo of the Public Archaeology Laboratory for a walk through at the pumping station. Structures North made visual observations of the building envelope and structure in order to document its current condition and determine what will be required to restore it for reuse. The Public Archaeology Lab (PAL) is providing historic preservation consulting services, including researching and documenting the evolution of the building over time, and helping us determine what character defining features will be essential to retain and what can be changed. PAL was already somewhat familiar with the Pumping Station and the adjacent industrial site, having surveyed the Charlestown Mystic River Industrial Area in 1997.

With each visit to the pumping station, we notice more details, such as the unusual brick pattern along the roofline of the south façade. While the interior side looks reasonably intact, the side facing the Mystic River is in poor condition and will likely be challenging to access for repairs, given the proximity to the water. We also wondered about the changes to the earlier fenestrations where additions have been added. We look forward to learning more following PAL’s research, and hope they uncover photos and plans that document the building’s earlier appearance.

Hacin Architects will aggregate the information from our various consultants, help HBI consider feasible reuses, and then provide a conceptual plan that anticipates a future tenant’s requirements.

 More to follow as we plan a future for this beautiful historic pumping station.