From the Romanesque dome to the ethereal "infinity" pool, everything about the Christian Science Center in Back Bay screams "eternal." But cash-strapped church officials are looking to build three new mixed-use towers on the site, and to revamp the pool with a shallower profile and a pedestrian crossing. Their efforts could be stymied by a new report from the Boston Landmark Commission, which recommends protected status for all five parcels.
Update, June 24: Officials from the Christian Science Church called us after the show objecting to our characterization of the organization as "cash-strapped." Church spokeswoman Debbi Lawrence says they have a balanced budget and are carrying no debt. While that may be true, the basis for our use of the term is the severe cost cutting the church has undertaken in recent years, including laying off or outsourcing about 40 percent of their workforce, consolidating office space and, most recently, ceasing the daily print edition of the Christian Science Monitor.
- Gary Hilderbrand, principal, Reed Hilderbrand Associates
- Tim Love, Utile, Inc. / Architecture + Planning