115 Winthrop Square

Client MP Boston
Location Boston, MA
Project Type Residential, Mixed-Use, Office
Status In Design

115 Winthrop Square includes Boston's next great public space: "The Great Hall" will be a year-round gathering place, programmed with events.

Situated in the Financial District of Boston, 115 Winthrop Square will give new definition and vitality to this part of the city. The massing of the tower is designed to be a beacon on the Boston skyline, while showing deference for the adjacent One Winthrop Square and other neighboring Art Deco-era buildings built in the 1920s and 1940s. The new tower will seek to enhance and revamp the existing Winthrop Square, creating open space to serve Boston, and linking together several other adjacent outdoor spaces. 

The mass of the tower has a plinth devoted to a public amenity entitled the ‘Great Hall,’ a 60-foot tall open space which traverses the building and transitions between the ground level and aesthetic differences found between Federal and Devonshire streets.  Above the Great Hall, the office portion of the building gently curves around Winthrop Square to the west, while reaching to create a strong vertical expression on the commercial Federal Street to the east. This gesture continues as the building transitions to residential uses at the tower midpoint. Adjacent to Winthrop Square, the building shears back above the office to maintain a consistent scale to the Devonshire Street wall, and a comfortable, intimate feeling within the Square. 

The site’s through-block nature creates a T-shaped building and allows the tower to reach out to two different street conditions. The variations in street conditions are mitigated through the creation of two distinct entry sequences from the east and west faces. To the west, from Winthrop Square, a much more formal, enclosed portal threshold is utilized, creating a dramatic emergence into the Great Hall space. The entry carefully scales down the overall tower so as to complement and show deference to One Winthrop Square, as well as enhancing the experience within the Square. A portico is maintained on the exterior at the Devonshire Street plaza allowing for a formal expression of the Tower, while also allowing for a transitional intermediate space between the Square and the Great Hall, and maintaining the Square as a moment of respite in the busy city.

The busier Federal Street will be directly adjacent to the main Great Hall space with the greatest activity, thus exposing street life to views of the interior activity, drawing pedestrian traffic into and through the Great Hall.  This will be accomplished through a large glass entry façade with opportunities to blur boundaries between indoor and outdoor space. 

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Designing Winthrop Square Tower

Look at Handel Architects' winning competition entry for Winthrop Square.

View Case Study