In the architect’s own words:
“I call this project “soft traces and unstable vectors.” It is situated at Alewife, in what one might call the ‘wild west’ of Cambridge, a place where one encounters a series of relentlessly traced layerings of the urban condition, more like concrete brushstrokes rather than a congealed city. There is a sense of theatrical passage, even when standing still. A highway. Some trace of savage swampland. The forlornness of parking. Squirrels.
The project is programmatically tripartite, perhaps didactically so. The vertical portion of the tower contains offices for the MBTA. The horizontal bar, cantilevered asymmetrically so as to avoid direct signification, contains Aku Aku, a Polynesian restaurant which for many years constituted a critical and not un-ironic layer of the area’s social, cultural and olfactory capital.
The restaurant is revolving, but like a hamster wheel.
The underground portion expresses the iconic cultural legibility of what may come to be called ‘Alewife roulette.’ There are five railway tunnels. The trains and platforms are unmarked and destinations change unpredictably. Two of the tunnels contain trains which go to and from New York at 350km/hr. Two go to and from Braintree. One goes to Springfield, express.”