Cahill Fitness & Wellness Center

Baltimore, MD

Gymnasium, natatorium, exterior splash area
Performance space, fitness area, dance studio, classroom, support spaces
Outdoor basketball courts, picnic area, playground
Sustainable design features
Baltimore City Department of Recreation & Parks
Programming, Site Analysis, Community Involvement, Sustainable Design, Interior Design, Full Design Services, Building Information Modeling

Design of the new Cahill Fitness & Wellness Center, which is located in Baltimore’s Gwynns Falls/Leakin Park, was inspired by the surrounding densely wooded 1,000-acre urban oasis.

The building’s natural forms and exterior material palette of wood and glass curtainwall merge the facility with the forested landscape. Inside, wood saved by Baltimore’s Camp Small Zero Waste Initiative and milled into construction timber adorns the walls. Carefully planned views out from nearly every space in the building, along with areas for outdoor activities, provide city residents endless opportunities to engage with nature.

The local community and Gwynns Falls/Leakin Park stakeholder groups were engaged throughout the early design stages and were critical in guiding the programmed spaces. Home to a thriving youth-based theater program, the previous facility lacked space for these young, talented performers, thus restricting the program’s growth. The design team worked closely with BCRP to develop a highly efficient floor plan to ensure parity with other BCRP facilities by allocating fitness space within the central core to allow for additional performance space.