The Allston Interchange project, one of the largest projects in Massachusetts, will reconfigure a major segment of I-90 (the Mass. Turnpike) just west of downtown Boston and will open up a significant development area near Harvard University. As part of this project, UIL was tasked with the design of two pedestrian and bicyclist bridges that will make critical connections between new development in the project area and the surrounding neighborhood. One bridge will cross over the Turnpike and commuter rail tracks and will replace an existing bridge, that does not meet current accessibility standards. This will connect the Lower Allston neighborhood with Allston Village. The other is located over Soldiers Field Road, the Turnpike and tracks, and will provide a connection to the Charles River Esplanade and the Paul Dudley White Bike Path from the Boston University campus and Allston neighborhood.
UIL’s design approach was based on context and the user experience. The bridge superstructure is designed to minimize the depth of the deck and to provide a sense of protection and enclosure for users traveling over these busy roadways. Additionally, the superstructure will become an iconic landmark, providing a sense of place and an aid to wayfinding.