01 Ascending 1

125 High Fitness Center

Boston, MA


Featured on AIA Chicago Details 2024: Entrez

Photography: Anton Grassl Photography

The atrium at 125 High Street is a public mixing ground and an extension of the Boston Financial District’s vibrant streets. A new Fitness Center further activates the atrium through the movement of its users, the choreography of its entry circulation, and materials that contrast and separate themselves from the flamboyant stone finishes from the original 1998 construction. The golf simulator and entries are darkened to create a theatric illumination and a sense of being occupied even when vacant.

16 Project Site Axon
02 Reflections
03 Ascending 2
04 Going Down Opposite
05 Railings
06 Going Down
07 Reception
08 Fitness Studio

The existing stair structure is reimagined as an immersive tunnel of light warmed by white oak plywood slats. The concept for the compression within the stair emerged from our realization that the existing stair and passage was too tight at the bottom and without a sense of transition or arrival. Demolishing the stair structure would have been wasteful so the tight conditions were exaggerated for deliberate effect.

The Horse in Motion high res

The slat walls featured throughout the circulation and transition areas, create a stop-motion animation effect for viewers and users of the space and further emphasize the sense of bodies moving through space. From the 2nd floor yoga studio users can look out at the activity below, and their shadow figures play against the glazing’s privacy gradient. The open gym and wellness studios allow for multiple functions and for future equipment to be accommodated.

09 Yoga Studio
10 Locker Room

One locker room has the opportunity for natural light. Inspired by the same stair structural rhythm, daylight access is preserved and maximized. The locker rooms also incorporate steam-rooms.

11 Entrance