Hubbard Elementary School

Ramsey, New Jersey

The Ramsey Board of Education’s program requirements for the 12,000-square-foot expansion to Hubbard Elementary School included a new full-size gymnasium and stage, entry foyer, two new classrooms, new music room and support spaces, such as offices, restrooms and storage.

Also, part of the plan was to convert the existing gymnasium into a special-education ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$183.00FEATURED IN1998 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYMultipurpose Rooms space. The design of the new wing centered around the creation of a courtyard space, which will be used as an outdoor ecology center, enclosed by the new classroom wing and the gymnasium. The showcase of the project is the gymnasium, which has exposed steel trusses, wood floor, glazed block wall accents and two handicapped-accessible stages.

The most difficult challenge of the design was to install a two-story space into an existing low slung one-story building without it looking out of place. This was accomplished by siting the gymnasium on a part of the site away from the front of the building, matching exterior masonry color, breaking down the facades with real and false fenestration, as well as accent bands, and creating false dormers. Conversely, the gymnasium building makes a prominent presence from the back side of the site, serving as a new community landmark where it is accessed from the new entrance foyer and parking.