At one time, Whitfield School operated from several different building types, including a garage, an existing house, metal building structures and an addition for the cafeteria and kitchen, and they were looking for a new image.
Phase I – The first project, completed in 1994, included classrooms, library, main offices, student commons, and a new main entry. This was only the first step in “energizing” the school, with a high-tech look and larger, more flexible environment to better accommodate the School’s curriculum.
Phase II – Completed in 1997, this phase included expansion of the Science Wing and its connection to the main campus. This addition houses new, upper school chemistry, biology and physics learning centers that provide separate instructional and lab spaces. Exposed structure, ductwork and lighting accompany the epoxy floor finish at lab areas, while suspended acoustical ceiling “clouds” and vinyl composition tile define the instructional area. A shared storage and prep area separates the chemistry and biology rooms, giving instructors the ability to make advanced preparations for upcoming classes. The renovated portion of the project provides more versatile instructional/lab spaces, and incorporates a “computer commons” for students to research and complete homework assignments at any time of the day.
Phase III – The third phase includes a new performing arts center, gymnasium, gallery and commons area and completes the campus with an elegant appearance along Ladue Road to the north. The Schmitter Gallery is a large gathering space connecting the entrances to the new Woods Performing Arts Center and the Cady Athletic Center.
Construction included a multifaceted process of renovation, construction and relocation of building functions. The existing athletic facility was expanded to create performance and practice gyms, power-lifting and fitness spaces and new locker and concession facilities. The existing media center was converted to classrooms, and then the Intellectual Commons and Piper Courtyard were created to provide a media center that includes wireless computer technology, a cyber-cafe and a mezzanine. These projects have set the standards for educational space and have elevated the quality of education at Whitfield School.
M+H has also worked with Whitfield on site signage and baseball field upgrades and we are currently performing a Facility Assessment at Whitfield School.
Many of us at Whitfield believe that M+H performed what amounts to a miracle. The final project looks like a first-rate, well-designed, functional, and attractive school building with a touch of the traditional to set the tone and image the school desired.
-Dr. Mary Leyhe Burke, Retired President, Whitfield School