Pratt Institute School of Architecture

Pratt Institute School of Architecture

Pratt School of Architecture at Higgins Hall, a historic landmark, was almost consumed by a four-alarm fire, laying bare the building’s six previous constructions. The renovated school creates a contemporary workplace - with the tectonics of the original structure and new interventions revealed, the building participates in the teaching of architecture.

Steven Holl Architects was a collaborator on the new entry and glass connector in the central wing.

AIA Institute Honor Award for Architecture | AIANY State, Award of Excellence | SCUP/AIA-CAE Honor Award for Excellence in Campus Architecture | NY Landmarks Conservancy Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award  Full list of awards
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Pratt Institute Architecture
Pratt Institute School of Architecture
Pratt Architecture
Pratt Institute Architect
Pratt School of Architecture

Previously hidden arched openings, timber lintels, cast iron columns, curved masonry, and 100-year-old scars from an earlier fire were incorporated in the renovation. New openings in the old masonry’s bearing walls create light filled studio spaces while double-height spaces created by the fire become review spaces with gallery balconies. The deteriorating exterior of the south wing was reconstructed using primarily salvaged material and its roof profile reconfigured to allow new operable windows, clerestories and skylights. A cantilevered blackened steel stair completes the original ornate cast iron stair with drama. 

Pratt Institute Architecture
Pratt Institute Architecture and Design

The new construction of the central wing creates an entryway and lobby for the school.  With a series of ramps and stairs and open studios, it negotiates significant floor height differences between the two other wings. Its mechanical systems are located in the north wing for maximum light and openness. The South wing was a pilot project for LEED-CI commercial interiors. The complete phased reconstruction project spanned ten years.

Pratt Institute School of Architecture Brooklyn
Pratt Institute School of Architecture Brooklyn
Pratt Institute School of Architecture Brooklyn