Danvers High School

Danvers, Massachusetts

The Danvers High School project was defined by several major components: ineffective programmatic spaces, substantial repairs and high operating costs. Despite substantial space, the facility did not accommodate the programmatic needs. Built in 1960 with a 1970 addition, studies recommended the demolition of the flawed addition except the fieldhouse. The facility lacked ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY1,000COST PER SQ FT$222.40FEATURED IN2014 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYRenovation physical presence or identity appropriate for the educational flagship for the town. There were many design goals to redefine the campus including the following:


• Create a sense of identity and presence consistent with and respectful of its residential neighbors.


• Create a sense of arrival and a hierarchy of activities, whereby community use was identified, parking accessible and the presence of beautiful playfields was shared by students and public alike.


• Establish a campus image, where buildings stand in harmony with the natural site and its breadth of playfields.


An appropriate sense of arrival was created. The academic building conveys a sense of scale and transparency with window expanses for views and daylight. The public and interactive spaces such as the auditorium, cafeteria and fieldhouse are active, stimulating and vibrant. These spaces are available to the community so they have a dual identity, requiring separation and zoning for ease of access without compromise to security. The overall effect is aesthetically pleasing and conveys all the best attributes of a campus for education and recreation.


The construction occurred while the students were on campus. The 1972 wing provided housing while the 1960s building was renovated and expanded. Upon completion of the first phase, the students moved back into the 1960s wing and the 1972 wing was demolished.


The revitalized school is a Green School following the MA-CHPs program. The building achieves 39.8 percent energy cost savings based upon regulated loads compared with the baseline building.