- Pohanka Fine Arts Center
- Turner Athletic Center
- Alumni Hall & Cotton Renovations
- Faculty Housing
- Progress of Capital Projects
Pohanka Fine Arts Center
Since its completion more than 20 years ago, the Bowman-Byron Fine Arts Center has provided students with art studios, space for music instruction and practice, and a performance venue in the Kellam Auditorium. As time has progressed, however, the number of students taking private music instruction and participating in musical groups has grown steadily and now includes more than 40 percent of the student body. The current facility was simply not designed to accommodate these numbers. As a result, the music and fine arts departments face the following challenges:
- Because of a shortage of classroom space, several music students receive instruction in hallways and in storage closets.
- Practice rooms are few in number and are in great demand, particularly during evenings and weekends when students use the facility to practice.
- The visual art studios are overcrowded and do not have adequate storage space.
- Additional classrooms and improved technological infrastructure are needed to expand the curriculum and incorporate modern technologies into the visual arts program.
Construction is nearly complete on the Pohanka Fine Arts Center, a 22,000-square foot three-story building that will house the art and music programs. The building is anticipated to open in the December of 2019. The state-of-the-art facility will include a concert hall for recitals, three artist studios, a gallery, a digital media lab, a 3D art studio, seven practice rooms, and seven teacher studios, where instructors will help students. It also will have a classroom and a choir-rehearsal room.
We are excited that we have met our $7 million goal and thank all of our generous donors. We are raising additional funds for furnishings and building maintenance and appreciate your further support of the arts at Saint James.
Turner Athletic Center
The athletics facilities at Saint James are a central part of school life, as all of the 240 students are required to participate in daily after-school sports activities. The locker rooms, the gymnasium, the training facilities, and all available indoor spaces are in near-constant use. A new athletic facility will remedy the following deficiencies:
- The boys’ locker room, located in the basement of Alumni Hall, is inadequately heated, poorly lit, and badly ventilated.
- The girls’ locker room, also in the basement of the building, is overcrowded due to the increased number of female students.
- The gymnasium is not air conditioned, has inadequate seating for spectators, and is in immediate need of a new floor. A performance gymnasium is also critical to the success of the Saint James Invitational Tournament.
- Locker rooms for visiting teams are small, unwelcoming, and inconvenient. Parking for the entire facility is inadequate.
- The main entrance to Alumni Hall is below grade and is not handicapped accessible, making it unwelcoming for visitors.
Plans for the new facility include: the construction of a performance gymnasium, new locker rooms for boys and girls, new locker rooms for visiting teams, and improved wrestling facilities. This facility also provides an alternate indoor space for commencement and other large school events. In addition, a redesigned entrance and new parking lots will make the facility accessible and friendly to all.
Alumni Hall & Cotton Building Renovations
To further enhance our programs, repairs and renovations are necessary in Alumni Hall and the Cotton Building. They will include:
On the ground floor of the Cotton Building we will be reconfiguring the space for our MIT-certified Fabrication Laboratory. A Fab Lab is a space for project-based, hands-on STEM education, and includes a laser cutter, 3D printer, and other equipment. An upgraded space will better meet the needs of our growing program and empower our students to create and invent, as they engage in a more active model of learning.
Our drama and theater programs will gain more dedicated space in the Cotton Building once the Pohanka Fine Arts Center is open. The first floor of Cotton will be renovated for enhanced practice, wardrobe, and stage support, and the stage will be extended to provide a side wing.
Alumni Hall & Fitness Center
In Alumni Hall, a new specialty sports flooring was installed. The wrestling room will be rededicated to a new two-room fitness center, which will include upgraded equipment and will be larger in size to give our student-athletes more space to train.
The Saint James Dance Program has grown significantly over the past five years, giving our students the opportunity to showcase their talent and earn a winter athletics credit. A new, larger dance studio will be built on the second floor of the Cotton Building, where the present art studio is now located.
Timelapse of Alumni Hall Flooring
Over the summer of 2019, a specialized vinyl sports flooring with cushioned backing for better shock absorption was installed in Alumni Hall. Check out the timelapse of the work by Abacus Sports and learn more about the flooring.
Thanks to generous donations from Roland and Dona Young (parents of Taylor ‘09) and Mr. and Mrs. Leo J. Rocca, Jr. (grandparents of Thomas E. Rocca ‘13), we have reached our goal for faculty housing. Construction was completed on a duplex on campus that now houses two faculty members and their families. We are most grateful to these generous donors for a gift that will support generations of Saint James School faculty.