Built in 1935, Woodrow Wilson High School in Northwest DC had fallen into disrepair over the years. In 2009, it was designated a historic landmark—just when the city was finally preparing to renovate it. cox graae + spack architects was chosen for the job based on a design plan that preserved the original Palladian-style buildings while integrating new construction. The goal was to modernize Wilson’s original 305,000 square feet while adding 71,000 more. The project was completed in 2011.
The updated, LEED Gold-certified campus now offers a green roof, rainwater harvesting, energy-saving systems and more. It houses a performing arts center, aquatic center and athletic center with two gyms. The school’s new cafeteria spills into a four-story atrium. This 10,000-square-foot gathering place (pictured here) soars to a skylight roof supported by tree columns.
ARCHITECTURE: CHRISTOFFER A. GRAAE, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C, cox graae + spack architects, Washington, DC. ASSOCIATE ARCHITECT: FANNING HOWEY, Washington, DC. PROJECT MANAGEMENT: Brailsford & Dunlavey, Washington, DC; McKissack & McKissack, Washington, DC. CONTRACTOR: GCS-SIGAL, LLC, Washington, DC.