Payette celebrated the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by holding our third annual Day of Service in January. This skills-based service program aims to connect our practice to the Greater Boston community by partnering with local organizations and make a positive impact through design excellence. In a year where so many have been impacted by the pandemic, the Day of Service and its mission to support local communities has never felt more important.
We began our outreach efforts in the Fall of 2020, meeting with potential Community Partners to discuss their programs, needs and the potential for partnership with our staff. We accepted a record-high number of proposals and accepted 5 great projects for the Day of Service, encompassing a range of typologies and scales from interior renovation to a new vision for an urban district. 43 Payette staff volunteered for the Day of Service, drawn from nearly all areas of our practice.
All work was conducted remotely, with flexibility and open communication being central tools for smooth collaboration and production. Two teams managed socially distant site visits, while others relied on a variety of digital collaboration tools to share ideas. At the final presentation, each team shared their projects with the rest of the firm and our Community Partners, who each received copies of their projects for use going forward.
We were simply overwhelmed by the dedication of the teams and the quality of work they produced, and we are grateful for all who generously contributed their time and talent, making the 2021 Day of Service a wonderful and successful event once again!
Head Start Renewal: Kitchen + Assembly Space Renovation – Boston ABCD Head Start & Children Services
The team completed a detailed design review of the lower level of the ABCD Walnut Grove Head Start & Children’s Services facility to improve safety and efficiency for children, teachers, and food service staff. The team developed two options for improving the kitchen logistics and the food delivery path to avoid contact with the children’s gross motor room and better serve the program’s growing needs.
Creating Safe Spaces for a Greater Number of Homeless Youth – Bridge Over Troubled Waters
Bridge sought help reviewing the design and layout of their main headquarters in order maximize their existing space and meet the current needs of the youth. The Payette team suggested several ideas for upgrades and improvements to the building that would enhance long-term viability of the facility and provide a framework for future projects according to a coherent plan.
Creating a Green Zone – Greater Grove Hall Main Streets
Greater Grove Hall Main Streets aims to pioneer a Green Zone in Boston to foster green businesses, practices and technologies along with green design interventions. Through analysis of the area, the Payette team identified speciﬁc environmental problems that need to be tackled to improve sustainability. With these environmental goals in mind, the team proposed possible urban design interventions at varying scales throughout Greater Grove Hall.
Reimagining the Sanctuary – Museum of American Bird Art at MA Audubon
With renovations to the main house of the museum set for construction, MABA sought Payette’s help to reimagine a portion of their exterior grounds. The team proposed a series of interventions to improve the overall campus experience and accessibility with a larger mission to motivate visitors to engage more deeply with nature, to safely open more areas of the site to public access, and to create or experience art.
Root Food Insecurity Flexibility Enablement – Root (Salem)
Last year, driven by the temporary suspension of daily operations at the sudden onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Root redirected all resources towards tackling the rapidly growing food insecurity concerns in the community. This project focused on renovating a portion of the Harborpoint event space to become additional kitchen prep and event storage space thereby allowing Root to expand their food production capabilities while still leaving enough room to hold various large format events, which are an important source of income.