Museum of Science—Boston, Concourse Renovation

  • Project Type:Occupied Space Renovation
  • Owner:Museum of Science—Boston
  • Location:Boston/Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Architect:Cambridge Seven Architects
  • Engineer:BR+A/Howe Engineering
  • Project Dates:Fall 2015 – Summer 2016

The renovation of the concourse (which connects a parking garage and the main lobby) at the Museum of Science had to be meticulously scheduled due to the fact that the walkway had to be useable for visitors (the Museum had 1.38 million visitors in 2015 alone) throughout most of construction. DCBA did both preconstruction and construction for this project. Construction was divided into two phases. During Phase 1, workers built a temporary wall along the exterior storefront that enclosed the concourse walkway on the interior and protected patrons from both the weather and construction activities. DCBA removed the exterior storefront, extended the concourse walkway, and installed a new storefront. We also converted a storage area along the concourse into new public bathrooms. New MEP services had to be run to support the bathrooms, which required that construction activities be completed within active exhibits in the Museum. Due to an anticipated increase in visitors during the December holiday season, completing this scope was critical. During Phase 2, the concourse ceiling and other architectural finishes will be upgraded, the greenhouse section of the concourse will be replaced, the stair tower glazing will be modified, and the MEP and fire systems will be brought up to code. This work will require the concourse to be briefly closed and for visitors and staff to be re-routed along the outside of the building. Scaffolding will be erected to allow construction workers to complete stair work during operating hours. In select areas, work will need to be done off hours. Architectural upgrades include new ceilings, light fixtures, back painted glass panels, sky lights, windows overlooking exhibits, and selective millwork. DCBA anticipates holding several review meetings in order to make sure that architectural trades are coordinated and existing conditions are taken into consideration.