Highplain Elementary School 

Andover, Massachusetts

Accessibility in the public school system is not really an option but a requirement. So when it became clear that the adjacent sports fields, regularly used by the students at the HighPlain and Woods Hill Schools, were not easy to access for anyone using a mobility device or with different mobility needs, LEMON BROOKE was asked to step in and help solve the problem. With skepticism afoot in the community, typical for projects mis-branded as being exclusive, we set out to win hearts as well as meet the code.

Faced with an 18-foot elevation difference and a host of public outreach and education workshops, the design incorporates a sloped walk that traverses the steep hillside and maintains a sculptural form, before opening up to the fields below. Two accessible embankment slides, one large and one small, make getting down the hill quickly, a lot more fun, and a staircase for getting back up, just as fast. The addition of a low-maintenance meadow planting and improved drainage have made the site more functional not just from an operations perspective but from a programmatic one as well, with more school and community events now held on the fields than ever before. Accessibility is for everyone.

 

 

CREDITS:

Client:                                       Town of Andover, MA

Structural:                                Roome and Guarracino LLC  

Contractor:                              Cella Construction     

YEAR COMPLETED:               2019

HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA

press to zoom
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA

press to zoom
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA

press to zoom
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA
HighPlain Elementary School, Andover MA

press to zoom
1/16