The Back Bay District – known for its iconic, Victorian-esque brownstone homes, beautiful tree-lined streets, numerous architecturally significant buildings, and cultural institutions – it’s easy to understand why it’s one of the most appealing neighborhoods in America. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Back Bay is considered to be one of the best-preserved examples of 19th-century urban architecture in the United States.
John Ford, REALTOR® – Boston Back Bay Condominiums & Rentals – Call Today! (617) 720-5454
Prior to the 19th-century, the Back Bay neighborhood was once mere tidal flats used for milling operations until the bay was filled over several decades, resulting in over 450 acres of usable land (landfill). Today, the Back Bay District, along with Beacon Hill, happen to be Boston’s two most exclusive and expensive residential neighborhoods to live in. The Back Bay has been an important center for American culture as the site for the original Museum of Fine Arts, the Boston Public Library, the Museum of Natural History, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
An attractive assortment of trendy restaurants, unique shops, art galleries, and vintage homes are found on its main streets, which include Newbury Street, Boylston Street, and the stately Commonwealth Avenue, often compared to Georges-Eugène Haussmann’s Paris boulevards. A fashionable shopping destination (notably Newbury and Boylston Streets, and the adjacent Prudential Center and Copley Place malls), Back Bay’s accessibility is unparalleled. Public transportation crisscrosses the neighborhood and amenities galore are at arm’s reach. WalkScore gives it a 95 out of 100 for walkability, ranking it as one of Boston’s most walkable neighborhoods.
Boston’s High Spine
The Back Bay is also home to some of the tallest office buildings in the city. Boston’s “High Spine” is a spiky backbone of tall buildings that run in a narrow, meandering path from downtown out along the line of Boylston and Huntington.
The High Spine idea came about due to a small group of architects back in 1961, who were members of something called the Committee on Civic Design, part of the Boston Society of Architects.
The basic concept behind the High Spine was to create a string of skyscrapers on a path that would not disrupt pre-existing, historical communities, and give Boston a distinctive skyline that would act as a visual reference for one’s location within the city. The John Hancock Tower and the Prudential Tower, are the two main peaks of the High Spine that can be found in the Back Bay District between Massachusetts Avenue and Arlington Street.
The 60-story, 200 Clarendon (also known as the John Hancock Tower) soars 790 feet into the sky and is the tallest building in New England. The Charles Luckman-designed, Prudential Tower, is New England’s second-tallest building, rising 52 floors and 749 feet. Other High Spine buildings in the neighborhood include 111 Huntington Avenue, 500 Boylston Street, and the Berkeley Building, which are visible from outside the city.
The Back Bay District is bound by the Charles River on the North; Arlington Street to Park Square on the East; Columbus Avenue to the New York New Haven and Hartford right-of-way; Huntington Avenue, Dalton Street, and the Massachusetts Turnpike on the South; and Charlesgate East on the West.
Back Bay’s street grid includes 5 east-west corridors including Beacon Street, Marlborough Street, Commonwealth Avenue, Newbury Street and Boylston Street (all are one-way streets except Commonwealth Avenue). Intercepting streets running north and south include Arlington, Berkeley, Clarendon, Dartmouth, Exeter, Fairfield, Gloucester, and Hereford Streets.
John Ford, REALTOR® – Boston Back Bay Condos & Rentals – Call Today! (617) 720-5454
Whether you’re considering buying, selling or renting, our years of experience and knowledge of Boston’s neighborhoods allows us to intelligently guide our clients. We go beyond the fundamentals of effective pricing and marketing and help you make decisions to get top dollar for the sale of your home or top value for your purchase. We focus on Boston luxury condos for sale and offer a variety of comprehensive luxury real estate services in the following Boston neighborhoods, but not limited to Back Bay, Beacon Hill, Charlestown, Fenway, Financial District, Midtown-Downtown, Seaport District, South Boston, South End, West End, and Waterfront.
Our team of experienced Boston luxury condominiums and Boston real estate professionals provides full-service buyer-client agency representation.We have a responsibility as well as a legal and ethical duty to ensure that your best interests are always protected. We’ll help educate you on the best neighborhoods, buildings, and properties that match your criteria and help you evaluate the features and amenities of your favorite choices.
With uncompromising standards of integrity, honesty, and service, our dedicated team will give you the assurance that your transaction will be completed promptly, professionally and ethically. Please give us a call at 617-720-5454 today! We look forward to assisting you with your Boston luxury real estate goals.
John Ford, Broker
137 Charles St.
Boston, MA 02114
Boston’s Back Bay District