Fort Smallwood Elementary School

Pasadena, Maryland

Fort Smallwood Elementary School, built in the early 1970s, is an open-plan school with limited window openings. The challenge faced by the architect was to expand this building and convert the open-plan areas to fixed-wall classrooms while the school remained in operation.

The design located the classrooms in the additions and along the perimeter of ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$77.00FEATURED IN2000 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYRenovation open-plan area, allowing natural light into all classrooms. The central areas of the existing open plan were used for classes during construction, and then converted into resource rooms (art, science, media center and computer labs) after the students occupied the new classrooms.

The classrooms are grouped to allow teachers to share planning and support areas directly from the classrooms. To organize the school, colors are used on lockers, VCT and accent painting to identify different building areas. Accent bricks on the exterior of the building correspond to the accent colors within.

A monumental lobby, incorporating a segmented glass wall with accent and glazed brick, marks the school entrance, which previously lacked identity.