LEED Rating System: LEED-NC


Date Completed: August, 2003

One Western Avenue, graduate student housing located in Allston, opened in August 2003. The project achieved a LEED Silver Rating. The building has 235 apartments for approximately 365 occupants and an underground parking garage for approximately 625 cars. The combined total budget was $105 million (Y2003). The project provides about 229,000 gross square feet of new housing on a 95,077 square foot (2.18 acre) site.

The riverfront site at the corner of Memorial Drive and Western Avenue heralds the entrance to the Harvard University campus from the south and west. A civic front with a brick U-shaped courtyard facing the river is similar to the traditional yards of Harvard Business School and Harvard’s River Houses. A 15-story tower continues a tradition of tall buildings along the Charles River. An elevated bar is unique to the building. It opens views to the river from the courtyard. The front lawn flanks a similar green open space on the existing Genzyme property and creates a pleasant terminus to the Western Avenue boulevard.

Project Highlights:

  • Harvard’s first LEED Silver building.
  • 19 electric car recharging stations in the garage, enough for more than 3% of the parking capacity
  • Open space along, and views to, the Charles River preserved by creating a cantilevered section of the building. 1.5 acres of open space created

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