The new East Elementary School in Hingham is a 630-pupil PK-5 facility, with a specific classroom wing developed to accommodate Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten students. The design of the new school included provisions for: increasing parking on the site; designing a compact building footprint that accommodates “more building” in “less area”; increasing setbacks from residential abutters; protecting and preserving existing site amenities; incorporating on-site sewage disposal; providing separated bus and auto circulation; developing two distinct “grade-level” play areas; providing separate delivery area for Pre-K students and parents; hiding service areas from public and abutter view; providing easy access to community use program areas; designing a traditional building that blends with the historical architecture of Hingham; incorporating “green” strategies including Massachusetts Green Initiatives and LEED certification; creating a “fully-conditioned” HVAC environment for year-round use; and incorporating Integrated Facilitator Learning Stations into each classroom environment. The new elementary school design provides a superior learning environment through thoughtful implementation of natural daylighting strategies, enhanced classroom acoustic techniques, and indoor air quality measures.
East Elementary School was one of the first new elementary schools constructed in Massachusetts to be Green Certified by the Massachusetts Collaborative for High Performance Schools. The project includes solar thermal renewable energy technologies, a gray water collection system, and many other sustainable features.
The final design successfully achieves all established goals, and the resultant building design is a 21st Century educational facility that integrates seamlessly into the well-established historical residential neighborhood. The two-story, 91,350sf facility provides an “unequaled” learning environment by successfully incorporating all of the most recent functional, sustainable, technological, and educational strategies for teaching, planning, learning, and student socialization.