Holyoke Community College, Frost/Donahue Renovations
Renovations to the Frost/Donahue Building was a major retrofit to a 1976 pour-in-place concrete building. The project presented a number of challenges including accessibility, unsuitable spaces and reconfiguration of spaces along a 350 foot long straight corridor. The corridor was poorly lit and institutional looking. The mandate was to redesign the corridor as a prototype to include small gathering areas for students and to identify the programmed areas that reside along its length.
The retrofitted areas include the Offices for Students with Disabilities, Student Activities, Institutional Advancement, Student Health Services, upgraded toilet rooms, adding a transgender single occupancy toilet and the conversion of two larger classrooms into three. The Office for Students with Disabilities had been designed before most accessibility codes had become part of our standard building codes. Doors to the offices were only 32” wide and the spaces were so narrow that a wheelchair could not navigate in the normal 5’0” turning radius. All services were required to be active during construction, which presented a challenge to phasing the work.
Finally, the project required some significant repairs to the concrete envelope that had cracked and spalled over the years. Some of the waterproofing repairs also addressed a number of original complicated details that were included as part of the original design.