ALAMEDA, Calif. (Aug. 13, 2019) – A ribbon cutting ceremony was held last week to mark the completion of the seismic retrofit and restoration of Historic Alameda High School (HAHS), welcoming students back to the iconic school after 40 years. Embracing the campus’ 1920s’ origins with various historic references, including period music and vintage cars, attendees were treated to student and staff-led tours. Speakers included Alameda Mayor Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft, Assemblymember Rob Bonta,Alameda Unified School District (AUSD) Board of Education President Mia Bonta, AUSD Superintendent Pasquale Scuderi, Alameda High School Principal Robert Ithurburn, AUSD Architect Mark Quattrocchi of Quattrocchi Kwok Architects (QKA) and Alameda Architectural Preservation Society Communications Director Jim Smallman.
The 100,000 square-foot historic high school, which was constructed in 1924 and is comprised of two buildings, is a registered Historical Landmark. Much of the high school moved to a new campus in 1978, and since then the campus has served as the district office, the Alameda Adult School and the Alameda Free Library. The district office moved out in 2012 after Quattrocchi and ZFA Structural Engineers deemed it unsafe and has since stood empty. The buildings were revitalized to meet the needs of HAHS’s modern learning environments while preserving its historic architectural elements.
The retrofit and restoration, which was overseen and managed by AUSD Senior Director of Construction Robbie Lyng and his staff, designed by QKA and built by Lathrop Construction Associates, was made possible due to funds from the 2014 Measure I Facilities Bond and state seismic mitigation funding.
“We are excited to officially be unveiling this beautiful project, and bringing it into use for our students,” said Scuderi. “This project reflects a vision that integrates preservation and contemporary educational needs in an artful and effective fashion, and I am delighted to be joining this community at the same time this historic facility is reopening. I want to personally extend deep gratitude and appreciation for the staff, project team, workers and community supporters whose collective efforts have both revitalized an important local landmark and added an incredible space for teaching and learning to this community.”
Opening for students this fall, careful restoration and modernization of the buildings includes:
- Historic interior and exterior restoration, including preserving main lobby to resemble the original.
- Modernization reconstruction that includes 37 state-of-the-art classrooms, 11 new science labs and an infusion of needed teaching technology to provide 21st century learning environments.
- Complete seismic retrofitting, installation of fire sprinkler systems and updating of structural, mechanical and electrical systems for functionality and efficiency – with minimal visual impact.
- Historic window restoration and reuse of elements such as window frames, trim and molding.
- New landscaping and seating areas along Central Avenue, as well as historic repair to exterior columns and reliefs, terrazzo entry stairs, bronze and copper detailing and numerous exterior decorative stamped metal panels.
- Outdoor learning space.
“Historic Alameda High School is a treasured and significant part of Alameda’s past, and it is incredibly rewarding to have helped to ensure it will remain a vital piece of its future,” said Quattrocchi. “We highly value our long-standing partnership with AUSD and look forward to seeing students, faculty and the community inspired by this iconic school that blends history with modern advancements.”
About Alameda Unified School District
Alameda Unified School District (AUSD) serves more than 9600 students in Alameda, California, an island community in the San Francisco Bay Area.
About Quattrocchi Kwok Architects
QKA provides comprehensive master planning, design and construction administration services for Northern California K-12 and higher education, historic renovation and community facilities. With more than $2 billion in projects completed in the company’s 33-year history, QKA’s award-winning portfolio reflects a commitment to design that emphasizes environmental sustainability and community impact. QKA has been recognized as one of the nation’s top K-12 and BIM architecture firms by Building Design + Construction. A proven inspiring and collegial environment, the firm has also continually landed on the North Bay Business Journal’s “Best Places to Work” list.