Adams Street Branch Library, Boston Public Library, Dorchester, Massachusetts
Architect-of-Record credit: NADAAA
New Construction: 14,500 Square Feet
Todd served in the position of Senior Architect / Designer in the conceptual and schematic design phases of this project.
Located in Dorchester, the Adams Street Branch of the Boston Public Library is nestled into one of Boston’s great working-class neighborhoods. Located on busy Adams Street, the library is set at a focal point where the road bends, making its visual presence a marker for the neighborhood. Following the BPL mandate for transparency and inclusion, the one-story building offers an inviting storefront. The single pitch monumentalizes the entrance, while a rhythm of peaked roofs creates an appropriate scale among the residential blocks. Varying pitches divert rainwater towards the eastern alley swales and rain garden. At the north, a beloved heritage oak tree anchors the corner of the commemorative Reading Garden. Having led both the feasibility study and the design/documentation phase, NADAAA worked closely with the Facilities Department, BPL staff, and the library’s Friends committee. Initially reluctant to part with the original branch, neighborhood representatives became project champions, working to honor their historical landscape, expanding program offerings, and reviewing the design at every phase. More than twice the size of the library it replaces, the Adams Street branch comprises a music room, a community hall, program areas for toddlers, tweens, and teens, and improved technology.