Revitalization of Boston's Haymarket


Architect's Journal Entries:


February 7th


“Around Day 3 we were at Quincy Market enjoying lunch as we discussed the mystery of the nonexistent Haymarket that was clearly marked on our pop-up map.  We chose to investigate the area once again… the day before the Haymarket did not exist but today it was alive with a makeshift structure along Blackstone Street.  The enclosure, consisting of multiple segments and constructed out of 2x4 studs covered with multicolor plastic tarps, faced the western store fronts creating a five foot aisle.  Feeling the need to explore an actual market first hand we entered the Haymarket at one end of the linear assembly.  It became an amusing experience as we found ourselves trapped in a long line of market shoppers.  We inched through the crowd to the opposite end – a very long city block away.  With no intention to buy, we were easy targets for the heckling vendors looking to unload fruit by the bunch.  The noise, the crowd and the smells joined together to become an unforgettable experience.  Unquestionably, this was the location of our market and our goal was the revitalization of an endangered city treasure.”


February 8th


“On the final day of our trip we returned to the Haymarket.  Fruits and vegetables were flying off the plywood tables at half price - everything had to go rather than being repacked into the U-Hauls.  We saw an opportunity to learn more first hand when a tall city worker clad in a blaze orange vest began chatting with a stout vendor.  There was a strong sense of pride in the vendor’s words as he explained to us the location of one’s stall was a birthright.  Whether he thought I was interested in opening a stall or just curious the man was skeptical not wanting to release market secrets.  The city worker was more willing to talk, revealing to us the responsibility the city has taken on to clean Blackstone Street after the vendors – no easy task since the worn brick road becomes littered with mounds of cardboard, rotting fruit and grotesque fish skeletons on a weekly basis.  

Sadly, over the next hour we watched as the people rushed to disassemble their temporary shelters.  With propane heaters packed and a mess left behind, vendor after vendor disappeared.  A bulldozer, dump truck and street sweeper left no trace of the Haymarket.  Our design concept became very clear, the design of our market needed to create an icon associated with a bountiful harvest and an endless supply of produce.  The symbolic use of the cornucopia form would become a tribute to the determination of the vendors that have kept the Haymarket alive for the past century.”


Think Design - Milwaukee, Wisconsin - Architecture & Interior Design


Revitalization of Boston's Haymarket

Boston, MA

Think Design - Architecture + Interior Design

Think Design

Architecture & Interior Design


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Think Design, LLC  |  Milwaukee, Wisconsin  |  Architecture + Interior Design