Sector: Historic Restoration

Kingsley Montessori School

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Commodore Builders was selected to convert the historic Exeter Street Theatre building into a Kindergarten through grade 5 campus for the Kingsley Montessori School. The Commodore team began the fast-track summer project with demolition and a reconfiguration of the floor plan to incorporate a new connecting stair. The newly reconfigured space features classrooms, library facilities, a science lab, performing & visual arts studios, a language space, an after-school program area and meeting space. According to Renee DuChainey-Farkes, Head of School, “Our goal in building this new space is to encourage individuality, inspire a child’s natural curiosity for knowledge and to prepare our students academically.”

Before beginning the construction process, the Commodore team was invited to attend Montessori classes at the 30 Fairfield Street campus to increase their understanding of the objectives of the Montessori classroom experience and to absorb the look and feel of the classroom environment. Commodore was challenged to duplicate the original building’s home-away-from-school feeling, while preserving the quality and character of KMS. The resulting space is unlike other schools. It contains no plastic, no square rooms, no teacher’s desks, or white walls and it retains the stunning stained glass windows that date back to the building’s early history.

During construction of the new school, Commodore collaborated closely with the adjacent restaurant and abutting residential condominium residents to minimize disruption in the quiet Back Bay neighborhood.

The new building adheres to green design principles, emphasizing state-of-the-art strategies for sustainable site development, materials selection and indoor air quality.