Client/Owner: Saint Francis School
Design and Architecture:
Douglas Pierson, (as Partner with (fer) studio, LLP)
Justin Williams, Project Architect
Structural/Civil Engineer: BTM Engineering
Mechanical/Plumbing Design/Build: Hussung
Construction Manager: Peters Construction
Owner’s Representative: Scott Gregor, Buffalo Construction
Renderings and models: (fer) studio, LLP
Photography: Ted Wathen, Quadrant Studio, Youn Choi
The project called for designing a new facility to house a combination gymnasium and performing arts center that would embrace the school’s environmental and educational values. The design provides an indoor/outdoor theatre, multi-purpose indoor/outdoor athletics facilities, and space for integrated instructional use. It also surpasses the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliances, uses sustainable materials and eco-conscious construction, and utilizes integrated ventilation as well as zero run-off site design.
The new facility integrates academic curricula into the built environment by letting students monitor the humidity levels in the gym. In temperate fall and spring months when humidity is often in the “sweet spot,” the east wall of the gym opens up to a canopied courtyard. The courtyard is the bridge between the indoor facility to the outdoor facility and the campus beyond. An open and monitored connection to the outdoors is coupled with a roof exhaust system, providing a convective cooling effect that expands the comfort zone and further reduces loads on the heating and cooling system.
The design provides natural, diffuse light by “peeling up” the bright red metal walls. This element allows indirect light to enter the gym evenly, which provides natural luminance during daylight hours with very limited usage of artificial lighting.