A Ferris wheel is part of a proposal being considered for Charlestown Navy Yard

New Developments News Charlestown
Rendering by Upton and Partners
Rendering by Upton + Partners Boston Planning and Development Agency

A Ferris wheel could eventually provide a new perspective to Charlestown Navy Yard.

The attraction is included in one of six proposals to make the area more appealing to visitors, including performance areas, as well as new dining opportunities and recreational activities. The Boston Planning & Development Agency is reviewing the proposals; the process is in a public comment period until the end of the month. 

“After reviewing the public comments, we hope to move forward with some of the short-term proposals that do not require a significant build out in 2019,” the agency said in a statement to “We will continue to evaluate the feasibility of the long-term proposals alongside the community. Our hope is that any proposal selected will encourage residents from across Boston to visit and enjoy the Navy Yard.”

Here’s a look at the six proposals the city received:

Upton + Partners

This proposal calls for a Ferris, or “observation,” wheel at the end of Dry Dock 2. It’s projected to stand 185 feet tall and could be taken down or put up in seven to 10 days, according to the proposal.

The wheel would have 42 “cabins” that are climate controlled, allowing it to operate in all seasons.

“This observation wheel will also be seen from nearly 10 million cars that annually cross the Tobin Bridge and will visually attract visitors from far and wide, including from across the harbor in East Boston and Boston’s Seaport District, West End, and North End neighborhoods,” the proposal says. It compares the wheel to the one on Pier 54 in Seattle, which attracts about 1 million people each year.

This proposal also calls for a beer garden at the end of Pier 5, plus programming with outdoor seating and a place where visitors could rent kayaks or paddle boards. There would also be a park.

A hall with “specialty local food” and retail is another addition to be considered, according to the proposal. It would include a sky deck and potential for an expanded farmer’s market.

Rendering by Upton + Partners —Boston Planning and Development Agency

Anthem Group

This proposal mixes public art exhibits, a beer garden, space for live music or theater productions, plus regular programming and seasonal festivals or events.

“The beer garden would feature a rotating selection of libations, including locally crafted beer, cider, wine, and custom-crafted sangrias,” the proposal says. Food trucks are also part of the proposal, and the garden would be environmentally friendly.

The proposal also calls for trivia and movie nights, events for people to bring their dogs, and “night markets” during the warmer months.

There could also be space for a free fitness series and places for art.

Rendering by Anthem Group —Boston Planning and Development Agency

DC Beane and Associates

Along with rehabilitating several piers, the company also calls for drop-off areas for water taxis, plus permanent or even temporary structures where a variety of events — festivals, movies, and performances — could be held.

The proposal also notes that Pier 11 could be used for an ice skating rink, outdoor gym, or dog park and could also have public art installations.

“Public art contributes to community identity, provides educational opportunities, and encourages civic engagement,” the proposal says.

Rendering by DC Beane and Associates —Boston Planning and Development Agency

Balance Architects

Temporary installations, like various types of canopy and outdoor lighting, don’t cost a lot and could help bring out the “natural beauty of living in a coastal city,” according to this proposal.

The area could also have a restaurant aboard a docked sailboat, it says. There could be fishing off a pier, plus places for food trucks, a fitness area, and a farmer’s market.

Rendering by Balance Architects —Boston Planning and Development Agency

Sea Boston

Harbor tours via kayaks and cycleboats are what this proposal calls for. Visitors could also take classes in how to do each.

The company would install a new floating dock for equipment storage.

Rendering by Sea Boston —Boston Planning and Development Agency

USS Constitution Museum

At Dry Dock 2, the museum wants to have a patio on the waterfront with seating and shade.

“As the patio is transformed into a space for everyday use, the museum will turn ‘inside out,’ taking the remarkable stories told by our collections and exhibits outside the museum into the Navy Yard,” according to the proposal. “Illuminated reproductions of maritime masterpieces will fill the exterior windows, bringing our trove of nautical art beyond our walls — even at night.”

There would also be art displays and Navy Yard history installations.

Banners on light poles would reference local history.

Rendering by USS Constitution Museum —Boston Planning and Development Agency

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