Moonlight Studio InSitu
The downtown business district of this former Mill Town centers on the triangle formed by Summer, Nason, and Main Streets. Over the course of the 20th century and with little apparent deliberacy the interior of this block was paved for parking. The area became an unsightly back-of-house utility zone; Functioning well enough for cars but hazardous for pedestrians and an eyesore for visitors, it recently earned official "blight" status from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
We launched this Master Plan project in a Summer 2020 version of our Moonlight Studio InSitu charrette / workshop process. We studied the structural geometric factors cooked-into the context here which seem to have challenged and limited improvements in the area. We then tried to un-tie a few of those knots and compose new relationships, iterating over and over to cultivate compositional synergies by which individual aspects of the proposed solution can support and enrich each other, and combine as a cohesive and comprehensive whole.
In our plan, Glendale Street and Naylor Court connect directly, stitching together circulation from North and South (and better integrating the Maynard Public Library and the Fine Arts Cinema into the fabric of the area). East of this new connecting road, parking expands and connects with the lot at Emerson Medical. West of the road, a series of civic spaces cascades incrementally southward from the triangle's North/Northwest tip: From the gateway vista at Veteran's Memorial to the Summer Street Overlook to the serene Naylor Green and The Basin playground and splash pad. Etched into the descent, a slender channel feeds a rain garden to manage groundwater re-change. Four distinct routes weave a fabric of connections to Nason Street, by which pedestrians, emergency vehicles, service vehicles, and drivers of private cars all have a place.