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May 30, 2024

The BSA Green Stairs: Part 3

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Sparks fly.

Photo by John Dickey (

You’ve made it to the penultimate article of our In Memoriam: The BSA Green Staircase series! Last time, we touched on the initial response to the Stairs’ installation and showed you the ongoing progression of changes in the Space.

A Challenge of the Mind

It was simply too good to go to waste. Several tons of steel, sliced and removed from the building, should not —could not — be tossed into some scrap pile on a pier. Some believe that places hold memories of the events that occurred there. But what happens to those memories when the place is literally dismantled? This is a challenge that John Dickey (a.k.a. the Timber Guy) took in stride.

Sections of the steps that once ascended directly to the BSA Space have been split into two-stair sections, fashioned into benches by Dickey, and donated to the recently renovated outdoor recreation area at the Boston Public Health Commission shelter in Roxbury.

The surgeon at work.
Oh, the devastating carnage!

One down, many to go.

The remaining steel, which was cut into irregular sections to prioritize those two-step sections during removal, were also salvaged by Dickey. How could he accomplish what seemed impossible: creating collectible items that embodied all that the staircase was? The requirements were not easily accomplished. They had to be visually interesting, serve a function in space, and carry the memories held within the raw material.

First stop, Metal Fab.

A Creation of the Hand

John went above and beyond in his development of the mementos. Each piece captures the beauty of the original stairs as well as the authentic reality of how they were removed (the ONLY way they could be removed) in beautiful pieces of art, befitting any office. Each of the larger items may include a hole created during demolition to facilitate removal, which add to the depth and authenticity of each piece. The watercut edges of the steel on all pieces have been sanded smooth for your protection, but all pieces are unique.

We have sets of Coasters (I gave you a sneak peek of these in the previous part 😉), which can be displayed or used as beverage coasters atop a Green Stair End Table, which is made entirely of that iconic green steel.

Looking for something different? Maybe you’re more into a Round Table, large enough to seat several people for discussions or meals.

If you’re looking for something that still maintains hints of the steel’s origins but is maybe a little less, um… green, then the Conference Table is perfect. The hourglass shaped legs are made from a combination of steel, supported with a slab African teak, and features a durable tempered glass top.

Benches, with AND without a back, can also be found in the lineup. Both the Backed and Backless Bench feature legs made from BSA Green Stair watercut steel and a seat made of African teak.

An Offering for the Heart

Bring a literal piece of the BSA Space to your space. These mementos are only available for a limited time. Some will be on display at the BSA Open House, if you’re someone who hesitates with items in your cart before hitting “complete order” for fear of not seeing the item in person (or as the kids say, IRL). All donations will support the BSA Foundation and its programming, connecting the profession to our community. Take a look at the options and secure yours today!

Only one article remains in this series. Don’t miss the final installment: subscribe to our bi-weekly newsletter Currents!

Special thanks go out to Corderman & Company for collaborating with John Dickey on this project, and to the Man/the Myth/the Legend/The Timber Guy himself for capturing images throughout the process and providing captions to work perfectly with the vibe of this article series. You haven’t heard the last from him, reader!