HMFH Architects

Andover High School

Currently overcrowded and outdated, Andover High School is slated for a makeover that will promote student well-being and project-based learning.

To kick off the feasibility phase, a comprehensive visioning process with students, teachers, administrators, and community members answered critical questions regarding the project scope and established architecture and sustainability-focused goals to drive the design. Interactive workshops, brainstorming sessions with focus groups, and community forums produced a vision for an energy-efficient, low-carbon school to accommodate a range of learning styles, with the ultimate goal of developing 21st-century citizens with strong critical thinking and community skills.



Over several months, the team investigated a series of options for Andover High School, from partial renovation to new construction, weighing the impact of each option on educational outcomes and considering town-wide resources such as the existing field house and Collins Center—a theater on campus.

In contrast to the current cramped, dimly lit, and unsuitable conditions, the renewed school will encourage academic exploration in a variety of flexible, light-filled, technology-rich learning spaces. All initial planning options include a core of shared spaces, such as the lobby, dining commons, and media center, surrounded by academic zones organized into pods. Each pod—a cluster of classrooms, labs, and support space around a central project area—fosters student-centered and interdisciplinary learning and promotes community and belonging within the 1,900-student school. A 9th Grade Academy will ease the transition from middle to high school.

In addition to core academic spaces, the curriculum’s emphasis on collaborative, hands-on education will extend to specialty learning spaces in arts and engineering. A robotics lab and project area, woodshop, building lab, and makerspaces equipped with innovative technologies will support students engaged in all manner of project work and discovery.