With Sea Levels Rising, Designers Meet the Challenge

Canoeing on Commercial Street in Boston

Canoeing on Commercial Street in Boston

We are so pleased to be included in the group of finalists for the Boston Living with Water Competition.

We teamed with ARC/Architectural Resources Cambridge and AKF Engineering to address the call for a resilient and beautiful Boston. Our team's board is called the WATER FUN(d). View the board here.

FUN(d) stands for “Future Underwater Neighborhood district.” We imagine a new kind of coastal neighborhood that skillfully evolves and interacts with the water as it rises.


Here are some of the things we discussed while creating our competition entry:

  1. Everybody in Boston is going to get their feet wet. One third of Boston is within 7.5’ of high tide. By 2100 the sea level rise could be between 3’ and 6’. Add storm surge to that number and imagine the impact on our neighborhoods.
  2. Combining creative solutions can mitigate the rising tides, protect our shorelines and provide social and economic value to the neighborhood. These solutions include introducing (or re-introducing) wave breaks, canals, salt water marshes, and living barrier walls. 
  3. We must adapt, collectively. Most importantly, all citizens need to embrace the rising water level with curiosity and adaptation for a resilient and beautiful Boston.


How can you learn more about living with water? Click here to view all of the submissions to the Boston Living with Water Challenge. Or click here to read the background documents that informed this work.


The Boston Living with Water Competition is administered by the Boston Harbor Association, the City of Boston, the Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) and the Boston Society of Architects. 


Images courtesy ARC/Architectural Resources Cambridge.