The Dahod Family Alumni Center at the Castle
Finegold Alexander Architects, along with a team of engineers and specialty consultants, transformed this distinguished mansion into a vibrant new Alumni Center serving Boston University’s 300,000-plus graduates. The project includes a complete exterior restoration, total MEP systems replacement, selective interior renovation, and an addition to the lower level including a new commercial kitchen to expand the BU Pub. Full accessibility was provided to the building’s public spaces. Originally built in 1915 by William Lindsey Jr. as a family home, the Castle has become an iconic, high profile location for not only the Alumni of Boston University, but also for faculty dining, graduate student gatherings and numerous other university events.
(Photo credit: exterior photos - Raj Das Photography; interior photos - Jane Messinger Photography; BU Pub photo - Anton Grassl Photography)
“In a campus with many purpose-built, modern facilities, it’s of great value to provide a distinctive and memorable sense of place that connects to the grandeur of a residential neighborhood that’s hard to otherwise grasp. Buildings like this one allow a continuum of memory to this place and across multiple generations of students."
Greg Galer, Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance (BPA)
The existing building envelope suffered significantly from air infiltration, a complete lack of insulation and central HVAC system. The commitment was made early in the project to pursue LEED Gold certification. The team snaked new refrigerant lines through the building for a new VRF system, provided a highly insulated and vented roofing system beneath the new slate tiles, and tightened the building through a complete repointing and the restoration and weatherstripping of the historic wood windows. Stormwater was managed on-site and where new materials were installed, they were carefully selected for human health. The building achieved LEED Gold certification.
“The building was at a point where a lot of deferred maintenance was coming to a head... It was time to do a major renewal/restoration, yet at the same time, there were some amazing historical interiors that were quite intact—they just needed a little buff and polish and some infrastructure to make them sing.”