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Kent Place School - Center for Wellness Athletics & Performing Arts

Summit, NJ

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Kent Place School, a leading girls’ independent school in Summit, New Jersey has engaged JCJ to plan and design a new wellness, athletics and performing arts center. This facility will be focused on enhancing overall wellness, competitive athletics and rehearsal and performance space. The new center will foster a strong awareness and mindfulness of health and wellness issues across all disciplines throughout campus attracting those who haven’t traditionally participated in athletics or performing arts programs. Uses include a gymnasium, a running track, fitness & wellness facilities, a 425-seat auditorium, a smaller performance venue, dance studio and support spaces. The building will be adaptable to accommodate large-scale events and unforeseen future needs.

The 23-acre campus is situated in a residential neighborhood and characterized by its predominately Tudor-style architecture. The campus is organized informally around a central sloped green. The new Leadership Center sits on a gently sloping site adjacent to the main entrance. A central challenge has been to create an architectural language that reflects and respects the character of the existing buildings while creating an image for this new, large facility. Utilizing similar materials and color palette in a contemporary way ties the exciting design to the existing Tudor-style.

JCJ engaged with multiple stakeholders, alumni and trustees to develop a program that reflects the current and projected needs anticipating potential future uses. JCJ then looked at the entire campus context to determine how to site and right-size the building. We then were engaged for full design services including fundraising support.

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