This comprehensive renovation of Cambridge’s 400,000 sf, multi-building high school was launched initially to address a failing roof and inefficient mechanical systems, however, the city and HMFH saw the potential to also address a number of programmatic and building condition issues that would reinforce the city’s commitment to its public schools.
In addition to refreshing classrooms and corridors with new windows, flooring, and wall finishes, the renovation also enlivens common areas and provides clear circulation and more internal transparency. The re-designed science core includes larger labs that accomodate teaching areas as well as space for experiments, and the theater is redesigned and rigged for live broadcasts.
The project earned LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council through significant sustainability improvements including a chilled beam HVAC system–well-suited to incorporation in existing concrete frame buildings—and a rooftop photovoltaic array. High-efficiency lighting, improved classroom acoustics, “green” flooring materials, water-conserving systems, and operable windows further reduce the school’s environmental impact. The renovated facility, which shares its urban site with two other city-owned LEED Silver certified buildings – War Memorial Athletic Center and the Cambridge Public Library – completes the campus complex of sustainable buildings and reinforces the city’s commitment to reducing energy consumption.