Amy Latimer’s day-to-day responsibilities read like a career resume. As president of TD Garden, Amy directs and oversees all operations at TD Garden, home of the Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics and host to many of the world’s most popular music and entertainment acts. The dynamic center hosts 150-plus events and millions of guests each year.
She’s also critical to The Hub on Causeway – a 1.5 million sf retail, office, hotel and residential development, being built on the parcel of land directly adjacent to TD Garden and the original site of the old Boston Garden. The project brings new hotel and residential spaces to the area, along with a 20-concept food hall, new restaurants and the largest below-grade grocery in Boston. All to say, every day, around the world and across oceans and time zones, Amy is leading some of the most dynamic food, entertainment and development projects in the industry.
Kind enough to spare a few minutes for our team, Amy recently connected with me to talk about The Hub on Causeway, trends in food and hospitality development, and more.
Delaware North’s efforts span the globe; what trends are you seeing that will shape food and hospitality for the decade ahead?
My work takes me around the globe, but Boston’s definitely home. And one thing we’re seeing in our city that’s happening all over is that landmark restaurants that have been around 50 years are now closing. Nobody can believe it, but at the same time, it’s very predictable. You have to evolve or you risk irrelevance. The days of the same people coming every Friday are over. That’s not a sustainable model.
Today, success in food and hospitality comes down to numerous factors. At the core, you have to deliver excellent, high-quality food. The market is so competitive, that anything less won’t survive. If you can do that, you still have so much else to navigate. Technologies like Uber Eats mean fewer customers may walk through your doors, but you can still reach them if you embrace that shift. New generations crave experience, so you can’t just build it and they will come. How do you connect with customers via entertainment, happy hours, free fitness classes – this is part of a food operator’s world and business plan now. We’re taking all of that into consideration inside TD Garden and also with The Hub on Causeway project. We know it’s going to be transformational for the neighborhood, but I think it’s also going to be a leading-edge model for urban food and hospitality development.
The Hub on Causeway is such an incredible opportunity. In what ways will it transform the neighborhood?
Just five years ago the area around TD Garden had no real residential component and its culinary scene was essentially pubs that happened to sell food. That’s all begun to shift, and The Hub on Causeway is going to push that to an entirely new level. This project alone introduces a new hotel, more residential space and commercial space. And, when it comes to food, we’re opening a food hall with authentic Boston concepts, new full-service restaurants, Star Market (the largest below-grade grocery in Boston) and a 1,500-peron live music venue – it’s night and day.
This project takes the place of the original Boston Garden, which had been a parking lot for the past 19 years. The Jacobs family’s vision, the idea to have this incredible mixed-use retail and new front door for TD Garden, I think we’d have been the first sports arena to have that had we opened when they first envisioned. After several years of thorough planning, we’re well on our way to realizing the transformational benefits this project will have on the immediate neighborhood and city of Boston as a whole.
You reference residential, commercial, entertainment. That rolls off the tongue, but those are different types of customers with different needs. How do you serve them all?
That’s a good point. The project also sits on a major transportation hub for Boston, so there are 50,000 people walking through each day besides the 400 apartment units, and the hotel that doesn’t really offer any food or beverage. So, you’re right, we need to come at it on all different levels.
Star Market (the grocery store) really embraces prepared food for those who seek healthy options they can grab and take upstairs quickly. So that really serves many of the residents and local employees. The approach our Delaware North and Patina teams have taken in the food hall and restaurant is going to foster community. I think sports are still one of the last real communal experiences in our social fabric. You go there with your family – it’s a multi-generational experience – and food is a huge part of it. The Hub on Causeway will foster that communal experience directly outside the building as well.
There’s definitely a line with all the different types of people who will be our customers. But, I think with the food hall, restaurants, entertainment offerings, we’ve created a scaled system. And, then you add the grocery store – I just think we’ve created a 360-degree ecosystem of food that will allow us to take care of every single person who comes through.
You said new generations crave authentic food experiences. Whether it’s an airport, TD Garden, The Hub, how do you create them?
[Laughing] That’s the secret ingredient; you want me to give it away? In all seriousness, authenticity is now a business strategy. So, when we’re selecting operators for our spaces, we search high and low to find ones that are unique and help create that experiential component. There is no tried and true anymore; you have to put in the effort to create something truly original.
We’ve certainly done our research and have several of these authentic Boston concepts planned for the food hall. We can’t share the plans just yet, but fresh, local seafood is most definitely an anchor for the space. I think there are thousands of entertaining, delicious reasons to visit TD Garden and soon The Hub on Causeway will add nearly two dozen more.
If you ever ask Kate St. Laurent to show you her resume or credentials as a lighting designer, don’t be surprised if she asks you to go for a late-night drive in and around Boston.
The “proof” that Kate excels as a stand-out architectural lighting designer surrounds the region and echoes in signature pieces of its built environment – the Novartis Institute’s BioMedical Research Campus, multiple Brigham and Women’s Hospital medical office buildings, Wellesley College’s Alumnae Hall*, UMASS Dartmouth Carney Library*, Wegmans in Natick, and Nantucket Cottage Hospital, to name just a few. The lights that illuminate these spaces and dot the night sky originated in Kate’s and her Lighting Studio team’s daily work.
“I’m not sure I’d actually take someone for a drive,” Kate chuckles at the idea. “But, there is something really rewarding about the tangible nature of our work. Architects, engineers, lighting designers – we contribute to pieces of the built environment that can stand for decades and centuries. We can walk by them. We can show them to our kids. We can talk to the people who live and work within them. There’s no doubt that motivates me.”
It’s a motivation Kate discovered after receiving her graduate degree from Suffolk University’s New England School of Art and Design in 2008 and taking her first job as a lighting designer. That job, and her initial work, served as an “a-ha” moment.
“The beauty of lighting design for me is that it perfectly blends creativity, math and science in a way that engages me on all fronts,” she adds. “From the moment I stepped into lighting design as a profession, I’ve loved it, and I can’t imagine ever stepping out.”
Kate and her team create lighting design solutions for healthcare spaces like Brigham and Women’s medical office buildings near Boston.
While Kate has no interest in walking away from the profession, it does allow her to leave footsteps around the world. Beyond the Boston region, Kate’s work also illuminates award-winning spaces across the country and globe including CJ Blossom Park in South Korea, Zurich North America’s HQ in Chicago, Carnegie Mellon’s Cohon Student Center outside Pittsburgh and soon, Pratt Institute’s Emerson Hall in New York City. For Kate, the global approach comes naturally.
Lab environments in CJ Blossom Park, an award-winning building in South Korea. Kate contributed to the building’s dynamic lighting design.
“Travel is part of my family’s DNA. I was fortunate to take three trips to Europe while in high school totaling nine different countries,” she explains. “I’ve visited China. My husband and I were able to visit New Zealand and have been to Europe multiple times. We took my son to California when he was one year old. My husband rock climbs recreationally, and that takes him and us all over the country. We prioritize travel and love all that it exposes us to.”
While the trips allow Kate to see the world, it also exposes her to different styles and approaches to lighting design.
“We were in Italy a couple years back, and they are doing things with lighting in retail design there that really push new boundaries. I remember a long narrow store in Milan that couldn’t have had more than 20 feet of street frontage. It had this really interesting line of light from the exterior canopy which caught my eye. It continued into the store, down a soffit, under the lower ceiling in the back of the store that was interesting and mesmerizing,” she smiles as she remembers. “It made you stop and drew you in. It’s important to see all the ways people use light around the world, so we can bring new ideas back and always push the envelope.”
Auditorium space at Carnegie Mellon University’s Cohon Student Center
Around the world, but always back to Boston. Kate grew up in the area, studied at both Boston College and Suffolk University, and now lives in Sommerville Proper with her husband and two children. While her work pulls her to different states and time zones, Kate admits her heart is embedded in Beantown.
“I left Boston for a brief moment after high school, but quickly transferred back to Boston College. My husband and I, we want to be in the city. We want to walk to our coffee shop, community park and grocery store, we want to raise our kids here.”
Excitingly for Kate, much of her current work will enrich the Boston area and even her alma mater. She’s working on the lighting solution for Boston College’s new Connell Recreation Center set to open later this year. The 244,000 sf building will be an inspiring addition to the BC campus that integrates health and wellness offerings in bold new ways. Campus Rec magazine said the building stands to be a beacon for the university once it opens.
And, in her personal time, Kate and her husband are working to transform a “funky barn” on their property into a new play space for their children. They plan to equip it with solar panels, other sustainability design features, and of course, great lighting.
Once these projects are completed, they’ll be new markers for Kate to see on her evening drives or just when she looks toward the backyard. They’ll be testaments to her creative passion, and spaces that shed new light on both her own and Boston’s bright future.
*Asterisk notes projects Kate work on with former design firms
Telehealth not only has the ability to increase convenience and improve care for remote patients, it also improves emergency department throughput, and ultimately can reduce potentially avoidable admissions.
While telemedicine capabilities are some of the most exciting existing in healthcare today, inconsistent reimbursement standards continue to hinder successful program adoption. Challenges continue in navigating the state-level variability in regulations and capturing procedures to receive the appropriate compensation and reimbursement. Because of its potential, it is crucial for organizations implementing telehealth to work closely with legislators and insurance companies to ensure reimbursement occurs in a timely and effective manner. Fortunately, the growing interest in implementing telehealth solutions has prioritized reimbursement evolution.
The purpose of this paper is to review the current landscape of telehealth reimbursement and provide insight into strategies for dealing with the complex regulatory environment. For example, when we asked a renown Academic Medical Center in Dallas about its telemedicine capabilities, they give a semi-standard response: “We would like to offer more, but billing is a significant challenge.” We’ll also take a deeper dive and show how one particular organization’s telehealth services are functioning like a well-oiled machine.
Download our Tactical Report on Telehealth Reimbursement >
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In order to build a successful ambulatory strategy, health systems need to approach ambulatory care similar to how a chef approaches a recipe. While you may start with the same ingredients, the different amounts and ways in which they are mixed together will create very different results. It is essential for health systems to identify those ingredients, and then combine them strategically to create the successful recipe that matches their patients’ expectations.
Our ambulatory care team understands the many questions this “recipe” may pose for an organization, which is why our approach recognizes the uniqueness of each health system – targeting our efforts to identify ambulatory marketing opportunities and tailor solutions that correlate with each client’s definition of value.
We recently created a report that outlines the four major categories of ambulatory influencers and defines the building blocks for an ambulatory care site, to guide healthcare systems in tailoring an ambulatory strategy to their own unique brand of healthcare delivery.
READ OUR REPORT – PERSPECTIVES AND FUTURES IN AMBULATORY CARE >