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Sanjay Gangal
Sanjay Gangal
Sanjay Gangal is the President of IBSystems, the parent company of AECCafe.com, MCADCafe, EDACafe.Com, GISCafe.Com, and ShareCG.Com.

Kensington High School for the Creative and Performing Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA by SMP Architects

 
May 15th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal

Article source: SMP Architects

Youth United for Change, a teenage activist group in this distressed urban neighborhood, was instrumental in charging the School District of Philadelphia (SDP) to create a smaller high school that would encourage students to graduate rather than drop out with little hope for the future. Coupled with this request was their desire for “a green school” that would provide a bright, healthy learning environment, in contrast to their home living conditions.

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

  • Architects: SMP Architects
  • Project: Kensington High School for the Creative and Performing Arts
  • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Joint Venture or Associate Architect: SRK Architects
  • Project Completion Date: September, 2010
  • Project Site: Brownfield Site
  • Project Type: Education – K-12 School
  • Project Site Context/Setting: Urban
  • Building Gross Floor Area: 88,450 square feet
  • Other Building Description: New
  • BOMA Floor area method used: Yes
  • Hours of Operation: 8 AM – 4PM, but open to public 7 days a week and after 4:30
  • Total project cost at time of completion, land excluded: $25,000,000.00

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

The site posed many challenges. Extremely long and narrow, it was bordered by a noisy elevated transit line. The property was also viewed by surrounding neighbors as a DMZ between two disparate communities and a haven for homeless people, drug dealers and wild dogs. How could we make a blighted, toxic lot into something positive?

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

From the beginning, the Design Team concentrated on making the building as transparent and inviting as possible. Views in would hopefully entice local families to send their children here and admire their accomplishments. Views out give students a positive focus on urban agriculture, green roofs and mural art. With a gesture of good faith, SDP did not fence the site in – which encourages community use and pride in this new facility and “park.”

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

Image Courtesy SMP Architects

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Category: School

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