Boston, MA

Boston Convention and Exhibition Center


With a 21-acre footprint, the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center (BCEC) is the largest convention center in New England. The facility features nearly a mile of elevated roadway partly over occupied space and a barrel-shaped, metal roof covering more than 10 acres. Shortly after it opened in 2004, MCCA observed water leaking into the BCEC’s interior spaces and identified other performance issues. SGH investigated the causes of the issues and designed repairs.

SGH investigated leakage, ice dams, and snow cornicing at the 10.6-acre, barrel-shaped high roof. We designed repairs, including the following:

  • Extending the existing built-in stainless steel gutter up to 18 ft wide and integrating the fully welded gutter and underlayment with the existing parapet, aluminum standing seam metal roofing, and building expansion joints to provide a watertight system
  • Modifying the existing roof drainage system to capture open channel flow in the built-in gutters and replacing existing dome roof drains with drop inlet drains integrated with the gutter and underlayment
  • Installing a mineral insulated heat trace system to promote positive drainage paths through ice and snow
  • We also investigated leakage into the building and failed expansion joints in the elevated roadway. SGH developed details for reconstructing roadway joints and designed related waterproofing repairs.

To improve environmental performance, SGH audited the BCEC’s energy, water, and material usage. We later conducted a detailed assessment to evaluate the feasibility of obtaining LEED certification. SGH led a team of consultants to demonstrate the facility’s sustainable performance and helped the BCEC achieve LEED O+M: Existing Building Silver certification.

Project Summary



Completion Date


Repair & Rehabilitation
Building Enclosures | Structures
Culture & Entertainment
Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA)
Specialized Capabilities
Marine & Civil Works | Roofing & Waterproofing

Key team members

Scott DiFiore
Scott DiFiore
Heavy Civil Division Head, Boston
Paul Kelley
Paul Kelley
Senior Principal
Aaron Lewis
Aaron Lewis
Structural Engineering Region Head, East