Schools Without Walls Renovation Design

Location: Washington, DC

Architect: Ehrenkrantz Eckstut & Kuhn Architects

Schools Without WallsSchools Without WallsSchools Without WallsSchools Without WallsThe School Without Walls (SWW) is an innovative, small, urban high school located in the heart of the George Washington University’s academic district in downtown Washington, DC.

Taking full advantage of its urban location by creating partnerships with the University and the wealth of other resources throughout the District of Columbia, the school believes that the city is its classroom. This philosophy has enabled the SWW to create a quality student-centered environment that maximizes integrative, interactive, experiential learning within the framework of a humanities approach. CCJM is a subconsultant for the design of expansion and renovations to the school.

The SWW is housed in the historic, 19th-century Grant School, originally designed as an elementary school. The plan is to create approximately 64,000 gross square feet of academic space on a 21,000 square foot site. CCJM is responsible for site design, stormwater management, utilities including a fire flow test, and parking. CCJM will prepare site plans on each stage of the design process, construction specifications, and participate in the bidding and construction inspection as well.

CCJM was contracted by EEK Architects to perform hazardous materials evaluation of the School Without Walls (SWW) located in Washington, DC. The District of Columbia Public Schools is planning a comprehensive renovation and modernization to the school. In order to complete this modernization it is necessary to evaluate the school for hazardous materials including asbestos containing materials, lead based paints, PCB containing light fixtures, and chemical storage.

Asbestos Containing Materials (ACM) were evaluated based upon the school Asbestos Management Plan (AMP). A comprehensive room by room survey was made inventorying materials that may contain asbestos. This survey was then compared to the information in the AMP and additional samples of suspected materials were collected and analyzed for asbestos content. Based on this analysis a determination was made as to whether or not the material contained asbestos.

The Lead-based Paint Survey was performed using the US HUD procedures, using the LPA-1 X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) Device and was performed to determine the extent of lead based paint. CCJM also performed an inspection and inventory of PCB light fixtures and chemicals in the school, including chemicals for educational usage as well as cleaning chemicals used by the custodial staff.

Once all field work was completed a final report was developed which outlined the findings of the field work and made recommendations for how best to mitigate the identified hazards. Based on this report a set of hazardous material specifications were developed along with cost estimates to direct the contractor on how to precede with the abatement of the identified hazards.

CCJM prepared the documentation for the following LEED prerequisites and credits:

  • construction activity pollution prevention
  • environmental site assessment
  • site selection
  • development density and community connectivity
  • alternative transportation, bicycle storage
  • stormwater management, quality control
  • heat island effect, non-roof

The project achieved a Gold rating under LEED for Schools Version 2.0.