162 Jay Street
Schenectady, New York 12305
New 9,500 square foot timber frame integrates building and site to accommodate the program for 80 children on the campus of Helen Hayes Hospital. The facility was designed to consolidate classrooms around a single central space. The unique layout optimizes use of square footage and reduces building volume normally dedicated to circulation and non-programmed space. The high roof over the center volume is supported by branch-like timbers with clerestory windows along its perimeter allowing daylight to filter through the structure from above.
Synthesis balanced eco-friendly design with child comfort and amenities. The building provides: draft free play and interaction at floor level with a radiant floor heating system and high efficiency condensing boilers; panoramic views of the vast Hudson Valley through solar shaded windows at child height; expansive play areas with surfacing produced from recycled auto tires and boulders harvested from the building excavation, as well as child sized gardens featuring indigenous plants. Building materials, from structure to finishes, were selected for: use of rapidly renewable resources and recycled materials; reduction of energy and waste during production; and the reduction of off gassing and other factors that may reduce the quality of the indoor environment.
Through the focus on “Green” construction, Synthesis created a vibrant learning center that, while many small feet will pass through it in the years to come, its ultimate footprint will help to sustain our earth for future generations