Map of Northeast Coastal Province States including:

Maine

Vermont

New Hampshire

Massachusetts

Rhode Island

New Jersey

Delaware

Maryland

Connecticut

Eastern New York

Southeastern Pennsylvania

 

OVERVIEW: CHARACTER OF THE NORTHEAST PROVINCE BUILT AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS

Northeast Coastal Province

The Northeast Province of the Forest Service encompasses national forests and facilities in the New England and Middle Atlantic States.

Northeast design is traditionally sensitive to

climate. Early builders were preoccupied with

keeping warm and dry. Because they lacked

mechanical systems to help them, they developed

architectural adaptations that still work well

today. For example, to conserve heat, they placed

chimneys within the building rather than outside

the wall. They connected farm buildings to their

homesónot just for the people, but for the

animals, who were more productive when kept

warm and sheltered.

 

Influenced by the traditions of Mother England,

New Englanders strongly preferred wood as a

building material. Writings of the period are full

of pointed comments about damp, cold masonry

buildings.

 

The buildings of New England are traditionally

sensitive to their sites and landscapes. The

rambling fieldstone walls of New England farms

literally grew from the land as farmers moved

them out of fields and stacked them into

boundaries. New England barns fit well with

the contours of the rolling topography.

 

Farther south, in the Middle Atlantic, German

settlers enjoyed brick and stone masonry and

celebrated its use with elaborate design. Many

rural buildings of Pennsylvania seem to grow

directly from the landscape of fractured rocks

shaped by glacial freeze-thaw cycles. Scandinavian

settlers introduced the log cabin in Delaware.

Scottish-Irish settlers spread this most-American

of building forms throughout mountains and valleys.

 

Throughout the province, farm buildings were

clustered close to roads to ease transportation

of crops and products to market. This is only one

example of a traditional idea that makes sense

today. For example, contemporary buildings placed

close to roads simplify snow clearance and mail

delivery. This also is a sustainable strategy as

it concentrates buildings near existing services,

transportation, utilities, and infrastructure.

 

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