2010 Exhibition of School Planning and Architecture Quincy High School Quincy, Massachusetts Design Concept Award High School Symmes, Maini & McKee Associates
Entry Court Community Environment: Planned for a total of 1,500 students at 330,000 square feet, and constructed in four major phases, Quincy’s new school is organized around four “academies of excellence:” Science and Technology, Humanities, Arts Academy, and a Ninth-Grade Academy to support the transition of students from the City’s six middle schools. The facility’s prime centralized location in downtown Quincy bolsters the school’s role as an important civic and community resource for arts and athletics. The two main public assembly spaces, the gymnasium and theater, are grouped together at the new main entrance of the school for easily accessible community use. The school will open in Fall 2010.
Entry Community Environment: The plan organization forms a courtyard off the busy Coddington Street corridor, creates a refuge for students, and provides quiet green space for the cafeteria, media center, and the culinary arts restaurant run by students, serving food to the public.
Program Adjacencies Rotunda Entrance Learning Environment: Due to the School’s unique academies of excellence structure, there are clear organizational groupings for each academy. Community access is provided to all major public spaces, and the courtyard serves as an organizing element for building users. S.T.E.M. Academy Gym Restaurant Fine Arts Academy • Courtyard: • Privacy • Open Air • Refuge in the City Commons Theater 1938 Building Freshman Academy Historic Facade New Facade Main Entrance
Science Wing Learning Environment: Students can now access a spectrum of collegiate-focused academic classes and hands-on, state-of-the-art project-based lab and shops. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs erase the barriers between the vocational and standard high school, creating dynamic connections: physics and mathematics; engineering and electrical and plumbing; nursing and biology and chemistry laboratories.
Existing Site Plan Physical Environment - A significant challenge to the team was to integrate academic programs on a tight urban site that was fully occupied throughout construction. A major protected wetland is directly adjacent to the building, and is within a coastal flood zone requiring careful mitigation. The new building dramatically wraps around the existing 1933 historic high school, with crisp, sympathetic architectural styling and detailing.
Rotunda Section Physical Environment - Cost effectiveness and community resources: SMMA achieved square footage reductions through program integration and planned future growth. A high-quality and durable materials were used throughout. A energy- efficient strategies were employed to exceed minimum code requirements. Sustainable features of the design: Materials are high-quality and durable. Energy-efficient strategies exceed minimum code requirements. Sustainable “garden” and greenhouse connect to the science academy with hands-on programming. Maintaining the downtown location close to existing mass transit means no school busing. Daylighting and natural ventilation strategies were applied throughout, along with highly-efficient lighting systems with full nighttime shutoff. The original 1938 High School was retained while demolishing less efficient additions.
Entry Planning Process: SMMA worked closely with the City’s School Administration and Mayor’s office to insure the highest quality academic and physical plan. The change from a departmentally-organized model – where teachers work in silos of single disciplines – to an academy structure of combined excellence in support of the broader interest of contemporary students was a significant project objective.
Main Entry Planning Process: SMMA worked with all staff to engender support for the complex changes engendered in the plan, particularly the inclusion of the Ninth Grade Academy, and the complete synthesis of vocational programs and standard academic programs.