Boston the “Permeable Realm” underlying the image of the city | The Plan
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Boston the “Permeable Realm” underlying the image of the city

Word quickly spread that Amazon is to locate its HQ2 in Boston after the technology giant signed a lease for an 18-story building in the city’s Seaport District to host its 2,000 employees. Today, America, and the rest of the world, is experiencing a new wave of urbanization, with cities competing intensively to attract talent and businesses. Boston is leading the field, positioning itself as America’s most innovative city. With a proud history deeply rooted in the American psyche, 21st Century Boston is undergoing an exciting transformation as a new global hub for the knowledge economy. Located on the northeastern coast of America in the State of Massachusetts, Boston is one of the oldest cities in American history. Today, we commonly refer to Boston as Metropolitan Boston, the combination of a group of cities: Boston, Cambridge, Worcester, Providence, Lowell and Quincy, home to nearly 5 million people. The city is especially well known as the home of 52 institutions of higher education, including some of the world’s top universities, such as Harvard and MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), a fact that is proving an increasingly competitive asset for the city. Boston’s Construction Over Time Boston’s building stock reflects its evolution over time, with entire neighborhoods constructed in relatively short timeframes (data source: City of Boston 2015 Tax Assessor and Parcel Data, BPDA). From a planner’s perspective, Boston is richly stratified, with vestiges of the colonial period and industrial age through to today’s contemporary urban design. The city enjoyed its first boom in the second decades of the 19th Century, thanks to the arrival of immigrants from various parts of the world that made Boston a major industrial city in the United States [source: “People & Events: Boston’s Immigrant Population”. WGBH/PBS Online (American Experience), 2003]. However, this rapid development lasted only...

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