PS 144Q Addition & Renovation

Forest Hills, Queens, New York

Urbahn was responsible for the design of a major expansion and significant renovations to this 1931 school. The 4-story addition houses 24 classrooms from Pre-K through 4th grade, a cafeteria and full-service kitchen. Our design also reconfigures space within the existing building to satisfy the full program, while providing accessibility and code compliance upgrades.

Our plan maximizes built area within the allowable zoning envelope, with the footprint aligned to property lines, while the mass above the second floor to mitigate its scale. The addition’s lower half is clad in a richly saturated brick, whereas the upper stories are of subdued color. The façade carries across the original building’s horizontal lines, with the first two floors echoing the window rhythm. A glass-clad entry node joins the addition and original building while differentiating old from new. The underground cafeteria is directly accessible from the street off-hours to enable community use without jeopardizing security.

Client: NYC School Construction Authority
Rendering: Urbahn Architects