Alden aids in the ventilation design of Boston's Historic South Station Overbuild Project

A project to build a high rise structure over the existing platform areas of Boston's South Station is beginning its kick off.  Alden has provided ventilation designs, aided by both physical modeling and computational fluid dynamic (CFD) modeling at various stages of the building design cycle.

The Construction Project

In addition to the proposed high rise structure, the project, dubbed the South Station Air Rights project, proposes to expand the bus terminal over the existing platform areas of South Station.  The four and a half year project intends to provide more convenient connections between the rail and bus terminal, as well as an improved station experience made possible by the covered tracks and platforms.

What to know about the big South Station tower project — and how it will affect your commute.  


The Project Evolution—as witnessed by Alden

While the construction phase of this project is in its infancy, Alden has a history with the transportation terminal's ventilation system.

In 1990, Alden used physical modeling to model two general ventilation systems and track exhaust hoods. The goal of the ventilation system was to provide pollutant free passenger walkways due to locomotives entering into, but not stopping within, the closed track section. 

Ventilation system modeling was again conducted from 2005-2008 with the initial design of the high rise overbuild in which the full track length was enclosed. Alden was to take the 1990 general ventilation and hood designs and move it forward to complete a plenum concept and feasibility study. The work this time, however, was completed by employing CFD modeling which matched well with the results found in 1990. 

The project was abandoned for some time following the 2008 recession, but when the project was again put into motion in 2017, Alden responded by evaluating a variety of station situations with CFD modeling to develop a robust ventilation system design, including finalizing the plenum design from ten years prior.  

View the project summary for more details.