HMFH Architects Completes Conceptual Design Study for Edward Devotion School

Lauren Williams's picture
Monday, January 7, 2013

HMFH Architects, a Cambridge-based architectural firm focused on the design of student living and learning environments, announced today that it has completed a conceptual design study for the renovation and expansion of the Edward Devotion School, a public elementary school in the vibrant and urban Coolidge Corner neighborhood of Brookline, Massachusetts. Recognized for its experience in developing design solutions for schools in dense, urban areas, HMFH was selected to determine how best to accommodate the school’s academic and enrollment needs and fit those into the Town of Brookline’s long-term planning efforts.

Serving pre-kindergarten through eighth grade, the Devotion School is housed in a facility of great civic and historic importance. Located around the historic Edward Devotion House, a permanent fixture on the site that dates back to the 1700s, the existing Devotion School is comprised of an original 1913 school building and two additions built in 1954 and 1974. The Town of Brookline commissioned HMFH to evaluate the existing conditions and propose possible options for improving the school, which is in need of upgrades to ease overcrowding, address accessibility and programmatic needs, and modernize building systems to increase efficiency. The Town of Brookline’s renewal of the Devotion School will better accommodate its challenging educational program and expanding student population.

HMFH’s goal for the concept study was to develop an array of options that will allow the Town of Brookline to improve the school for the benefit of the community. A preliminary space summary was compiled to address the anticipated increase in enrollment. All design options were to be measured against this space summary for their ability to satisfy the programmatic needs of the school. HMFH evaluated ten separate options that include a simple no-build renovation, renovations with minor and major additions, and new construction. Some options allow for more play areas, while other options feature new construction in favor of renovation, allowing for better development of programmatic adjacencies within the building. Most important to the Town of Brookline, HMFH developed design options that can allow the school to remain open and operational on the site during a renovation or new construction scenario.

HMFH previously designed the renovation for Brookline’s seven-story, 1960s Town Hall, improving both energy and operational efficiency.

About HMFH Architects

Since 1969, HMFH Architects, Inc. has built opportunities for learning on a local, regional and national level. With its distinguished range of award-winning work from renovated urban buildings to new rural campuses, HMFH is recognized as a leader in the design of innovative academic environments. HMFH's work, noted for its user-centered design and energetic use of color, has been exhibited nationally. For more information, please visit