New Arts Academy Facility Breaks Ground in Boston

By Roxanne Squires

BOSTON – Perkins Eastman recently joined the Boston Arts Academy Foundation, the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA), and the Mayor’s Office of the City of Boston to celebrate the groundbreaking for the new Boston Arts Academy.

The project will increase the size of the building from approximately 121,000-square-feet to 153,500-square-feet, permitting greater capacity to the Boston Arts Academy.

“It has been a thrill to work with the Boston Arts Academy, Boston Public Schools, and Boston Public Facilities Department to create a project that provides the BAA with the spaces they need for their very special programs. The BAA is truly a unique environment where arts and academics are intertwined, and we have worked to design a facility that supports their process and expresses their values,” said Jana Silsby AIA, LEED AP, Perkins Eastman’s project architect.

Situated on a prominent corner across from iconic Fenway Park, the new building exists as a beacon for the neighborhood—to convey its significance as a learning community to onlookers.

This is reflected at the exterior through a series of projecting glass bay windows that showcase the activity occurring within and keep occupants constantly connected to the urban fabric. The building also includes rooftop outdoor learning and performance space.

The new five-story building will offer new and greatly enhanced performance and rehearsal spaces, including a new 500-seat theater featuring a proscenium stage, a black box theatre, dance studios, a recital hall, art gallery, music practice rooms, and visual arts and fashion technology studios and workspace. In addition to this, the building also provides common gathering and teaching spaces along with an award-winning STEAM program.

The facility will also include a gym and a health and wellness center for students.

Furthermore, the building has been designed with a range of features that are proven to improve indoor environmental quality (IEQ), with a focus on improved daylight, thermal comfort, acoustics and reduced CO2 levels to improve cognitive function.

“It’s thrilling to see this building, with its much-needed student spaces take shape and to know that it will serve future generations of passionate artists and creators,”

said Boston Arts Academy Headmaster Anne Clark.

The new $125 million facility is designed by Perkins Eastman in association with Wilson Butler Architects and is expected to be complete in 2021.

The project team also includes Lee Kennedy as the construction manager.