What would you call it if you heard about a building that was constructed to house and care for mentally ill patients that was so poorly designed and configured that it probably caused the people to suffer worse because of it?

Ironic? Or, tragic?

And, what if I told you the building was here, in Boston?

Welcome to the Lindemann & Hurley Buildings, in the State Services Center, in Boston’s West End.


– click photo to enlarge

The Architecture of Madness – By Philip Nobel, Metropolis magazine

Horror stories of patients lost in the building are common, as are accounts of assaults on patients and staff in its many dim, secluded alcoves. Indeed, the building has proved to be so insidious that it is possible to hold certain spaces responsible for repeatedly abetting self-destructive acts.

A catwalk over the Lindemann’s plaza-level lobby had to be glazed after it invited too many suicide attempts. The chapel, a top-lit chamber called out on the skyline with a crowning finial, is experienced as the heart of the building, what Rudolph once called “that releasing space which dominates.” It has been sealed shut since shortly after the building opened in 1972; a patient died there after igniting himself on the concrete slab altar.

As one former Lindemann Center psychiatrist noted darkly, the patient was just following environmental cues: “It looks like a place that should be used for human sacrifice.”
Here’s an awesome photo of the building:


– click to enlarge image

Contact me to find out more about Boston condos for sale or to set up an appointment call/text 617-595-3712.

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For more information please contact one of our on-call agents at 617-595-3712.

Updated:  1st Q 2018

Author Profile

John Ford
John Ford

Over the course of 20 years in the Boston downtown real estate market, John represented and sold numerous, condominiums, investment and development properties in Greater Boston and in the surrounding suburbs

In addition to representing Boston condo buyers and sellers, John is currently one of the most recognized Boston condo blog writers regarding Boston condominiums and residential real estate markets. John's insights and observations about the Boston condo market have been seen in a wide variety of the most established local & national media outlets including; Banker and Tradesman, Boston Magazine The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and NewsWeek and Fortune magazine, among others.


For over 24 years, John Ford, of Ford Realty Inc., has been actively involved in the real estate industry. He started his career in commercial real estate with a national firm Spaulding & Slye and quickly realized that he had a passion for residential properties. In 1999, John entered the residential real estate market, and in 2000 John Started his own firm Ford Realty Inc. As a broker, his clients have come to love his fun, vivacious, and friendly attitude. He prides himself on bringing honesty and integrity to the entire home buying and selling process. In addition to helping buyers and sellers, he also works with rental clients. Whether you’re looking to purchase a new Boston condo or rent an apartment, you’ll quickly learn why John has a 97% closing rate.


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John Ford and his staff can be reached at 617-595-3712 or 617-720-5454. Please feel free to stop by John's Boston Beacon Hill office located at 137 Charles Street.

John Ford
Ford Realty Inc
137 Charles Street
Boston, Ma 02114



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