Massachusetts State Police - Lower Basin Barracks 

March 27, 2024

This facility received the Law Enforcement Facilities III Gold Award in the 2023 Officer Station Design Awards.

Official Project Name: Massachusetts State Police - Lower Basin Barracks 

Project City/State: Boston, MA

Date Completed: July 1, 2023

Chief/Director: Colonel John E. Mawn

Project Area (sq. ft.): 19,700

Total Cost: $20,885,655

Cost Per Square Foot: $1,060.00

Architect/Firm Name: Finegold Alexander Architects

City/State: Boston, MA

Phone: 617-227-9272


Design Team: Finegold Alexander Architects; STV Incorporated; The Green Engineer; RSE Associates; Samiotes Consultants; Copley Wolff Design Group; Epsilon Associates; R.W. Sullivan Engineering; Fennessy Consulting; Kalin Associates; Howard Stein Hudson; EFI Global; McPhail Associates, LLC; Madero Engineers & Constructors, LLC; Tighe & Bond; Daniel O’Connell’s Sons - Construction Manager 

Project Description

The renovation and addition to the historic 1908 Lower Basin Barracks for the Massachusetts State Police (MSP), revitalized an undersized facility that had been in significant disrepair. Through the historic preservation of and new addition to the Charles River Basin Lower Locks Gatehouse Building, the team modernized the existing structure and created much-needed additional space to accommodate MSP’s H Troop consolidation and closure of Upper Basin Barracks. 

The project supports the State Police with current and future mission requirements, preserves the historic fabric of the original building, features a contemporary new addition, and creates a public green space that serves as a gateway to Boston’s Esplanade. The original building is on the National Register of Historic Places and is prominently located in the Lower Charles River Basin, and involved coordination with Massachusetts Historical Commission, Boston Landmarks Commission, Chapter 91 to protect public waterways, Article 97 to preserve public parkland, and the MSP Strategic Facilities Plan. 

The new double-station facility right-sizes the barracks and creates a site that is welcoming and accessible to the public. The thoughtful site design maximizes parkland for public recreation; integrates safe pedestrian and bicycle circulation throughout; maintains access along the water’s edge; and provides uninterrupted views of the Charles River. The project clearly delineates restricted access areas from public open space. The new conference space is available for use by local community groups, improving public engagement. With the goal of minimizing the building’s carbon footprint, the design features an all-electric HVAC system. 

Tracking LEED Silver certification, the design also incorporates interior light shelves to maximize day lighting and extensive landscape bioswales. Steps to improve the building’s resiliency—given its riverfront location—include an elevated ground level; the main electrical and mechanical rooms on the second floor; and elevating the backup generator for a projected 100-year storm event.


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