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Queens, NY | 2,900 SF | Sustainable Design Features | Educational




collegiate hs before.jpg
collegiate hs before 2.jpg

Photographs by APT

Queens Collegiate is a middle and high school located in the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens.  Predominantly a retail, commercial and residential area, Jamaica is also known for being home to many Asian, Hispanic, African and Caribbean immigrants.

Previously home to the historic Jamaica High School designed by architect William H. Gompert in 1927, Queens Collegiate School offers classes to middle and high school students.  Its learning

center, a 2,900 sq ft area, was designed by APT to provide study, lounge and meeting spaces for its 700 students.


The school wanted to improve the current functions of its rooms by expanding their everyday use.  Our design concept aimed to create a new and flexible learning environment by restoring and highlighting the existing historic perimeter and introducing contemporary design elements.


Our historic restoration intervention comprised of restoring the wood and marble bookcases, stained glass interior windows and the wood trims along the perimeter of the open space. Our contemporary additions included adding new discrete lighting fixtures, a poured seamless recycled flooring, custom wood furniture and ergonomic seating.  We designed these elements to make the new spaces functional while leaving the historic aspects intact. 


The sequence of spaces is articulated by modular and movable furniture that can be reconfigured easily, allowing for the desired flexibility. Lounge areas were established throughout the space through the use of benches and individual seating.


The LED lighting, the environmentally friendly and healthy materials and technologies throughout the renovated space make this library a bridge between community traditions and contemporary standards.

This project is part of Atelier Pagnamenta Torriani’s architectural acupuncture interventions in NYC: a transformative series of public school libraries that are expanding their educational purpose by rebuilding communities through culture.

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