The Landscape Architect’s Guide to

Boston

Financial District / Government Center

Long Wharf

Your Guide
Susannah Ross, ASLA
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Originally extending a half mile into the Boston Harbor, historic Long Wharf affords land-bound visitors the chance to walk out into the busy harbor, feel the salt spray, and sit within feet of ships and sailboats passing by. Having fallen into disrepair by the 1980s, the Big Dig project catalyzed a renovation and redesign of the wharf, originally built in the early 1700s.

Sasaki designed the restoration, returning the most dramatic portion of the severely deteriorated wharf to public use. A lower perimeter serves as the active “working wharf,” where passenger boats load and unload. The central upper wharf is an open promenade, highlighted by a large compass rose that provides navigational information. Details enhance the historic importance of the wharf and create a ‘‘wharfscape” with materials able to withstand the battering of the sea.

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