Boston’s First-Ever Open-House Architecture Festival Kicks Off This Weekend

It's all completely free and open to the public.

Brutalist, Federal, old, new—Boston’s architecture is a wonderful mishmash of styles and periods.

On June 4 and 5, all of it will be celebrated in the city’s first-ever open house-style architecture festival. Called Common Boston 2016, the celebration will provide unrestricted access to dozens of architecturally significant buildings. Hosted by the Boston Society of Architects, Common Boston is meant to encourage Bostonians (and tourists!) to think about why design matters.

“Common Boston is a fantastic opportunity to discover the amazingly rich architectural, cultural, and historic resources of neighborhoods throughout Greater Boston,” said chair of the BSA Foundation, Mike Davis, in a statement. “The Foundation looks forward to stimulating new conversations among neighbors, business owners, and residents, and a greater sense of how the built environment impacts our everyday lives.”

More than 50 sites will be open for visitors to explore, ranging from historic spots and community gardens to office towers and churches. Highlights include the Strand Theater, the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site, District Hall, the Ether Dome, the MIT List Visual Arts Center, and more.

Common Boston was launched more than 10 years ago to connect designers with the public. While the all-volunteer organization has hosted hundreds of events since its founding, Common Boston 2016 is the program’s first open-house design festival.

All of Common Boston’s events are free and open to the public—except for the festival’s launch party on June 3. Dubbed the “dParty,” the Friday night festivity will celebrate all things design at the Innovation and Design Building in the Seaport. The building’s seventh floor is set to be transformed into a block party of sorts, including all the amenities of a real streetscape. Tickets for the dParty, which are $10, must be purchased in advance.

The weekend festival is set up in an open house format, meaning dozens of venues are open at once. See the calendar here, and good luck planning out which spaces to visit first.

Common Boston 2016, June 4 and 5, times and schedules vary, see for more information. dParty tickets are available here.