Architectural Education Session 3


Front view of Boston's Trinity Church seen at daytime

It was standing room only at last night’s third Architectural Training session here at Tocci.

This week we covered Romanesque, Byzantine, and Gothic Architecture. This period covers roughly 1,000 years in western history which we studied by looking at the prominent architecture of the time: cathedrals. Starting with Romanesque, we looked at basilicas and cathedrals from ~ 300 AD – 1050 AD and we also learned that this style had a strong revival in the late 1800s, in fact, one of Tocci’s favorite architects H.H. Richardson designed many buildings in this style. When we present around the country on Integrated Project Delivery (IPD), we use H.H. Richardson’s Trinity Church here in Boston as an example of how collaborative the building process used to be. In Richardson’s day, he and his builder Norcross were completely integrated; Richardson would produce perhaps a dozen sketches, communicate his design intent, and then Norcross would completely detail the building. We refer to IPD as going “Back to the Future” because it brings back this level of collaboration, communication, and trust.

Next, we moved on to Byzantine, the style of the Eastern Roman Empire. This was a fascinating period for architecture because it reflected the cultural melting pot that was taking place at this time. Then it was on to the Gothic period which, we learned, is characterized by ” light, verticality, dematerialization, pointed arches and rib vaults.”

It was a great evening, and at one point our superintendents and project managers got so excited that they stood up and started asking so many questions, Professor Pierce didn’t have time to answer them all.