The Athletic & Recreation Complex was recognized by the AIA Pennsylvania Central Region Chapter’s 2020 Excellence in Design Awards by receiving the Excellence in Design – Honor Award, the highest achievement bestowed upon a project.
The Room to Grow project renovated the entire school, but the Heart of the project is the new 25,538 gsf Athletic & Recreation Complex reflecting the importance of health and wellness in education. The design includes a fitness center with free weights/cardio equipment; a multipurpose Physical Education, dance theater/yoga space; 5 regulation squash courts with spectator seating; a sports medicine/training room and a two-story lobby connecting the two gyms and the current studio arts space with the rest of the school.
A “Wellness-on-Display” approach utilizes as much glass as possible to invite and encourage students to become interested in health & wellness. Benches are strategically placed at the Squash Courts f or “Third Spaces” for the students to socialize and “hang-out”.
The exterior “porch design” creates shed roofs with metal columns that are designed to look like athletic socks with the school’s colors. The addition ties nicely into the existing buildings, which were also renovated in this project.
The Lower School entrance was redesigned with grading, landscaping, a bench and a new series of signage. High performance windows and a VRF System for heating and cooling were installed in addition to the roof replacement, all of which increased the R value.
The Lower School main corridor was renovated with a new ceiling incorporating a rhythm of acoustical tiles and hard ceilings. New lighting and wooden cubbies were installed to match the Middle and Upper Schools. A tackable surface was designed to transform the hallways into an art gallery. New casework, sinks, solid surface countertops and storage units were installed in the classrooms in addition to new eco-flooring/recycled rubber carpeting that is also in the hallways.
Murray Associates Architects was the Architect of Record but partnered with Centerbrook Architects & Planners, LLP.
All Photos courtesy of Don Pearse Photography