Lexington Center Streetscape Project
The Sasaki Plan
What is the Sasaki Plan?
In 1966, with concerns about the fast-approaching effects of the Burlington Mall on the vitality of Lexington Center, the Town engaged a group of local architects to offer their vision for Lexington’s downtown. They developed the Comprehensive Report on a Plan for Lexington Center, known as the Sasaki Plan. This 143-page document offered wide-ranging architectural, streetscape, and traffic circulation concepts for the Center. Hideo Sasaki was an influential landscape architect who helped develop the plan.
The plan, which included parking garages and a loop road around the Center to divert traffic to side-streets, was never built as presented, but many elements were incorporated into the design for Lexington Center as we know it today.
How different are the current plans from the original Sasaki-inspired Center?
The Center Streetscape Project retains the basic Sasaki plan with its trees, benches, and wide sidewalks, and makes improvements to accommodate urgent needs that have developed over the intervening fifty years:
- making the Center safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
- narrowing portions of Mass Ave to calm traffic.
- reconfiguring the dangerous Woburn St / Mass Ave intersection and installing smart traffic lights.
- refreshing and renewing the Center, which after fifty years is showing its age.
- rebuilding the Center’s failing road and sidewalk infrastructure, much of which hasn’t been touched in decades.