Gould Park is the site of Chatham’s Village Green. As the setting of vibrant summertime activities including band concerts, picnics, and town festivals, it is a much-used and beloved open space in the heart of the community. Occupying an important spot on the edge of the Green, this simple building housing restrooms and storage is an object surrounded by open space (a golf course is adjacent to its back). It is an architectural edge and visual backdrop to the park. One of only two structures on the large site, the building employs reinterpreted Greek and Gothic Revival elements and details befitting the quiet dignity of its surroundings. It may be a small building, but the image it projects is distinctively civic. It is a contemporary interpretation of a temple set on the typical small New England town’s major public space.
An initial scheme, rejected for being too costly and too dramatic, was based on the exuberant Victorian architecture of a nearby Main Street commercial area. The scheme would have been more sculptural than that which was built, in the tradition of the steep-roofed park pavilions of Calvert Vaux and other American Victorian architects. However, the finished structure possesses all the pride and elegance of its Grecian forbearers, and recalls the tradition of Greek Revival architecture in the new American republic (of which many examples are found in Chatham). As a gift to the community, Polhemus Savery DaSilva designed and performed general contracting services on this project pro-bono.