Following a comprehensive feasibility study that began in 1998, St. Stephen’s Episcopal Cathedral Parish began an aggressive project to expand its K-8 facility from 180 to 300 pupils. The vestrymen also desired to unify the campus, which consists of various properties that make up a complete one-block, urban site less than two blocks from the Pennsylvania State CAPACITY225COST PER SQ FT$103.30FEATURED IN2004 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYRenovation complex. The renovation encompassed five existing buildings, including a 177-year-old cathedral and its adjacent, 158-year-old Chapter House, both of which are designated historic structures.
At the heart of the project is the site’s largest building, an unheated concrete frame, brick exterior, 1920s four-story garage, which was transformed into classroom and multipurpose room space for the Cathedral Parish’s K-8 school. Also included in the project are renovations to the 1840s school building and a new stair tower addition that connects both structures. Other improvements include renovations to the internal circulation spine that will connect the campus and provide handicapped access.
St. Stephen’s Episcopal Cathedral also took a leadership role in environmental efforts as the first church in the United States to register 16,000 square feet of its facilities with the USGBC LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) program. The St. Stephen’s Cathedral has not lost its grandeur, respect or historic appearance. In fact, many of these attributes were preserved in the design.