Fort Point Channel to get some fancy benches

The Atlantic Cities reports on the new "streets seats" going in.


Free tagging: 



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That looks about as comfortable as the monstrosities which have been discomfiting wannabe sitting commuters at Downtown Crossing for the past forty years. On the upside, the many spaces between slats (or whatever they may be called in this configuration) present wonderful new opportunities not only for trash disposal but also for the retention of bodily fluids way beyond the expiration date. I also suspect the updraft will prove interesting to those wearing skirts.


No Wa

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I used the picture in the article cited by Adam in the OP and took a jaunt to Atlantic Wharf. I think that I was in the same spot where the Wa bench was on display but I couldn't find it. I did find two empty spots where a Wa could have been.

My apologies for not knowing how to post images here. If you want to take a look, I posted it on twitter

Not yet

You couldn't find it because it's not there yet - the trial benches (looks like all 20 finalist designs, not just the Wa) will be installed in April.


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I used the picture in the article to which Adam linked in the OP. It didn't look like an artist's rendition. Did they just take pictures and then take the bench away?

In any event, I had a lovely walk and sat on the old timey benches pondering what that area used to be like way back when I was a kid.

Edited photo

The bench's shadow doesn't follow the same direction as other shadows in the photo. Someone added it in with a photo editing tool.


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Absolutely hideous.

i like the one that uses old

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i like the one that uses old pilings-- it is simple, contemporary, contextual, and looks reasonably comfortable. Some of those are pretty silly, but for all the people in here griping: cmon we're talking about benches, we can afford some irreverence and risk taking here. I for one am happy that this kind of stuff is happening in Boston


Yes, I like that one quite a lot as well, although that bit about how people communicate best when their chests are at a 45 degree angle is a bit puzzling. For that matter, I like the "Wa" bench, and quite a few of the others.

However, I'll stand by the idea that the giant pile of knotted rope is ugly and will become disgusting quickly, and I'm not very fond of the other rope one, which looks uncomfortable to sit on and is like the artsy granite benches in Downtown Crossing station in that the art reduces the actual amount of seating space available.

Blue Line Benches

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Wood Island Station also has those granite benches, which are freezing cold to sit on in the winter. Not that anyone sits on them anyway as they are always soaking wet from the rain and snow, since the station was designed with no consideration for the elements at all. And while we are at it, why are the benches at Aquarium Station so extremely low to the ground? It makes them difficult for some people to sit on. I realize that in the scheme of things these are very minor issues, but it ilustrates how the T does not take practical considerations into account when designing stations.

I also like the "cleat"

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I also like the "cleat" benches and the Park Bar benches. They seem simple, usable and interesting looking.

More info on the benches

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For those that don't read carefully, there are twenty semi-finalists, of which the Atlantic Cities article showed only one.

More information can be found at the design competition's website There the twenty semi-finalists (plus all submitted designs) are detailed.

This month scale models of the twenty semi-finalists are on view at Design Museum Boston’s Design Innovation Gallery at Factory 63 in Fort Point.

In April the benches will start appearing around Fort Point Channel, with their official launch on April 27th.

20 designs

Umm...the Atlantic Cities article has a photo gallery of all 20 designs, with a video for each one. (I've looked at all 20 photos, although I didn't look at any of the videos.)

Just For The Record

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I did look at the slide show before posting my comments. I chose to comment mostly on what I felt were the specific design flaws of the one bench shown at the top of the page. My comment concerning Downtown Crossing was about ALL of what I saw.

The grampa-getting-grumpy point is that a bunch of normal old park benches (sans any bar-separated seating areas, of course) would probably work best for the greatest number of people and would not have incurred near the expense which will be associated with those shown.

What the heck. De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum, as my grandfather said that time they arrested him for having tattooed Mussolini's face on the neighbor lady's ass.


A few were even practical

I liked several. Some were stupid or impractical. Dominick had drainage holes that doubled as cup holders! Nearly every car comes with numerous cup holders, so why not a bench located in a typically breezy location. Bike rack bench makes some sense for reducing bike thefts - somebody will often be seated right there and notice the wire or bolt cutters.