Upper Kovler Gym. Photography: ©Bruce Van Inwegen

Athletic Complex at The University of Chicago Laboratory Schools

Chicago, Illinois

Images: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Area: Renovation – 14,000 square feet
           Expansion – 25,000 square feet

Site & Program: When the Sunny Gym was built in 1928, it was designed to accommodate 700 students. With an enrollment of 1600, Lab’s physical education facilities were overcrowed and inadequate. In order to provide high quality physical education programs for its students, Lab School hired Nagle Hartray to design the new two-story Kovler Gym just south of Sunny Gym, renovate Sunny Gym, and reconfigure Jackman Field to include a soccer field, five tennis courts, and a track and field area. The new complex is used by students from kindergarten through 12th grade throughout the school year and for summer programs such as Theater Lab, Summer School Camps, and Athletic Camps.



Design: The Kovler Gym is connected to the existing building by an arcade. The first floor contains a multipurpose/dance area and an arcade overlook into the lower level practice gym. The second floor contains a full size competition gym with seating for 550. The architectural design and materials for the new addition are consistent with the building precedent on the campus - it is clad in Indiana limestone with collegiate Gothic architectural details.

Renovation of the Sunny Gym has provided a modernized structure. Work included redesigned locker rooms and improved classroom spaces as well. 

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