Design excellence must be key ingredient in waterfront vision

RE “A vision for Boston’s waterfront” (Page A11, Sept. 30): I couldn’t agree more with Jim Canales — we desperately need a coherent vision for the development of the waterfront if we want to maintain the balance between tradition and innovation that defines the city. But it will take more than the resiliency, access, and public engagement he notes to get the kind of quality he cites New York’s High Line for providing. The success of this kind of urban amenity depends on brilliant design. It is the inventive planning, powerful architecture, and imaginative landscape that brings throngs from around the world to a once-abandoned strip of New York real estate. The Barr Foundation and the Boston Planning and Development Agency need to add design excellence to their list of key vision requirements.

David Eisen

The writer is a principal at Abacus Architects + Planners and is the vice president for communication of the Boston Society of Architects. This letter represents his opinion.