District of Columbia Public Schools

Washington, DC

Woodrow Wilson High School — School Modernization Program Management

The District of Columbia’s Office of Public Education Facilities Modernization undertook a project to modernize 120 of its schools either through renovation or demolition and new construction.  The District retained B&D to provide program management and project oversight for the projects, and the work began in 2007.  The Woodrow Wilson High modernization involved the conversion of the existing auditorium into a new gymnasium, major renovation of the academic core building, conversion of the existing gymnasium into the visual and performing arts center, and a reconfiguration of the main entrance.  We also oversaw asbestos abatement, window replacement, new MEP systems, new lighting, upgraded finishes, and landscaping. Among the most innovative features of this project was the transformation of the ‘hole-in-the-donut’ in the academic building into a dynamic new Central Crossroads Courtyard atrium space below a dramatic skylight roof.  The project was completed in 2011 and earned LEED Gold certification in 2012.  The project also has earned the following awards:

U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School Award Learning by Design - Honorable Mention Award - Renovation / Adaptive Reuse / Restoration (Historic Preservation) Excellence in Historic Preservation State Historic Preservation Officer's Award CEFPI World Congress Lee J. Brockway Award for Outstanding Renovation AIA/DC Award of Merit in Historic Resources American School & University Magazine Architectural Showcase of Outstanding Design American School & University Magazine Outstanding Design Award WBC Craftsmanship Award Winner in Four Categories: Atrium Skylight, Masonry, Structural Steel Framing, Foundations & Excavation NAIOP Award of Excellence - Best Renovation - Historic Restoration CMAA Project of the Year Honorable Mention Renovation/Modernization, Constructed value greater than $15 Million


Transforming a Diamond in the RoughPresented by Beth Penfield, Kerric Baird, Christoffer A. Graae, and Alexander Wilson at the 2013 DesignDC Conference.

Public Schools: Reclaiming Innovation Through Adaptive ReusePresented by Chris Dunlavey, Beth Penfield, Gerard Heiber, Kerric T. Baird, and Anthony DeGuzman at the 2011 USGBC Government Summit.


New Performance Spaces for Older Schools


In the News 

Final Walkthru: Woodrow Wilson High SchoolThe modernization of Woodrow Wilson High School, built in 1935 and accorded historic landmark status during the project's Design Phase, combined renovation and adaptive resuse of 305,286 square feet of existing space plus 71,221 square feet of new construction.


Learning by Design - Honorable Mention Award - Renovation / Adaptive Reuse / Restoration (Historic Preservation) — Woodrow Wilson Senior High School