By Eric Althoff
NEWTON, Mass.—Cambridge-based architect HMFH Architects has been tapped by the city of Newton to undertake a pre-feasibility study for updating Franklin Elementary School. The school, which is in need of modernizing its campus, is being renovated as part of Newton’s 10-year plan to reimagine its overall educational infrastructure.
Franklin, built in 1938, was added to via two additions in the 1950s. However, in the 21st century the city believes the school lacks sufficient functional space, both on the outside and interior. There is also no dedicated music room, and many of the entrances and exits are not ADA-compliant.
HMFH’s survey will encompass determining what physical space challenges exist currently at the school, and then to determine the best ways to update those areas. Accordingly, the firm will perform a facilities assessment, as well as determine how expanding the campus will allow it to blend effectively with the older architecture of the neighborhood while taking into account the sustainability needs of a modern educational project.
“HMFH is known for its excellence in educational planning, community process, and sustainable design. We are excited to be working with them to determine the best path forward for Franklin and its community,” said Alex Valcarce, deputy commissioner of the City of Newton Public Buildings Department. “The design of highly efficient and sustainable buildings is a priority for Newton, and the creation of wonderful facilities that promote 21st century teaching and learning environments helps Newton advance our goals and objectives with regards to excellence in education and inclusion.”
This fall, HMFH and New Vista Design will commence collaborating with the neighborhoods around Franklin on potential renovation plans.
HMFH Architects is a certified Women-Owned Business, and has worked on the educational sector throughout the Bay State.