Concord Academy, Elizabeth B. Hall Chapel Expansion and Renovation
Concord, MA | 2004
Steeped in history, the chapel was originally an early 19th-century meetinghouse in New Hampshire, which was purchased, dismantled and reassembled on the school campus in the 1950s. To maintain the chapel's ambience and finishing, the expansion used wood that remained intact from the 19th-century logging of first-growth forests, which matched the rich patina of the original meetinghouse interior. Creative design elements included a curved geometry to minimize the massing of the addition and an eyebrow eave across the rear of the building to echo the elegantly curved, 1963 steeple. The renovation included necessary heating system and lighting upgrades and discreetly threaded a new life-safety sprinkler system throughout the chapel.
Shepley Bulfinch TeamWilliam Barry
- Honor Award for Design Excellence 2005, Boston Society of Architects/AIA
"It is with considerable gratitude that I write this note expressing my appreciation for the wonderful job you all have done with the Elizabeth D. Hall Chapel renovation project. From the first meeting when you presented your firm's goals and philosophy, I knew that you would appreciate this complicated and sensitive project with skill and care. . .While it took me and others a while to warm up to the rounded expansion idea, there is no doubt that it was the best solution, not only because it ‘solved' the problem of space, but because it added a beautiful and elegant design element to a very basic building design. While the building is obviously larger, its feel and character have been preserved. That was my hope, and your design accomplished it." -Jacob A. Dresden, Head of School, Concord Academy