Bay State Road/Back Bay West


The Bay State Road/ Back Bay West area was created during the 19th century, as part of the large-scale land reclamation and infilling project that also created the Back Bay.  The first blocks of the Bay State Road area were laid out in 1889, with the majority of development occurring between 1895 and 1899.

In 1900, the Bay State Road Improvement Society (an organization of neighborhood property owners) agreed to prohibit commercial and industrial uses of their land for a period of fifty years.  As a result, all of the structures built in the Bay State Road/Back Bay West area were private residences until 1950.  Yet despite the predominantly residential character of the area, it has also been home to prominent hotels and two renowned medical clinics.

The Bay State Road/ Back Bay West area contains several prime examples of various architectural revival styles popular during the late 19th century. The five major revival styles represented in the district are Classical Revival, Renaissance Revival, Georgian Revival, Federal Revival, and Tudor Revival.  It is the strength of the varying revival styles that characterizes the Bay State Road/Back Bay West area. 


The Bay State Road/ Back Bay West Architectural Conservation District was designated in 1979.

Scope of Review

All exterior work (including work at rooftops) that is, or will be, visible from any public way requires the review of the Bay State Road/ Back Bay West Architectural Conservation District Commission.  A Certificate of Appropriateness, Design Approval, or Exemption Application must be submitted to and approved by the Commission prior to beginning any exterior work that is visible from a public way. 

See the Standards and Criteria for the Bay State Road/ Back Bay West Architectural Conservation District for further information.

Applications, application instructions, and a schedule of filing deadlines and hearing dates are available below.  To save time and costs, property owners and developers are encouraged to contact staff early on in the project planning process, in order to obtain information on compliance with guidelines.

  • Please note that Commission staff is not available to review applications for completeness immediately upon submittal. 

  • Please review all instructions and documentation requirements carefully before submitting your application. 

  • It is your responsibility to ensure the application is complete before submittal.  Incomplete applications will not be accepted


View List of Members

Bay State Road/Back Bay West Information

Application Information and Filing Instructions


  • Bay State Road/Back Bay West Agenda July 2014

    The Back Bay West/Bay State Road Architectural Conservation District Commission will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, July 8, 2014 at 5:00 PM in Room 709 of City Hall.

    BSR/BBW Agenda July 2014

BSR/BBW Agenda Archive

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