Walnut Hill School for the Arts
The Walnut Hill School for the Arts project consisted of the construction of a new 18,500 sf performing arts center – “Studio 5” – and two campus courtyards at the southern edge of the Walnut Hill Campus. The project is located alongside the existing Dance Barn, replacing the current one-story dance center. The new Studio 5 and the Dance Barn – while attached – remain completely independent buildings structurally and systemically, with a continuous fire separation between. The building is located parallel to a steep hill and contractors had to negotiate a 12 foot grade change, resulting in a partially buried building with upper and lower courtyards. The new “Studio 5” is comprised of two primary programs, a Studio Theater at a lower level and a Dance Studio at the upper level, each with necessary support spaces that include dressing rooms, storage rooms, equipment/control rooms, etc. A single lobby connects the Theater and Dance, providing access to shared support such as restrooms, elevator/stairs, offices, and a mechanical room. The scope of this project includes the demolition of the existing dance center and connector, limited repair to the exterior of the existing Dance Barn, the re-grading required to achieve optimal floor heights and courtyards, and the construction.
The project achieved LEED Silver Certification. Construction was completed in August, 2016.
Architect: designLAB Architects
Owner: Walnut Hill School for the Arts
Location: Natick, MA