Buckingham Browne and Nichols
Cambridge, MA 2009
  • Centerbrook Architects and Planners
  • Charles Mayer

Buckingham Browne & Nichols was conceived as part of an extensive renovation and expansion of the institution’s Upper School. Situated along the Charles River, the landscape builds on the diverse riparian ecosystem and is inspired by the river’s many oxbows. Repurposed steel planks and site walls flow throughout the courtyard and entry, leading students through diverse plantings of ferns, sedges, iris, holly, dogwoods, river birch and sycamores. This sequence culminates at April’s Memorial Garden, a space designated for the class of 1975 with a memorial cherry tree, seating and diverse mix of seasonal flowering plants. Large curving walks relate to the building’s scale and lead visitors to the renovated main entry, which brings a sense of the urban realm onto the campus. The existing large Sycamores along the entry were saved to preserve the continuum of the species along the Charles River.