Brookline, MA Leading construction and development firm, Skanska, and the town of Brookline, completed a substantial expansion to Brookline High School (BHS). The revitalization of BHS broadens the school’s capacity to teach and inspire future generations of students in a variety of versatile, state-of-the-art learning environments including a fully equipped S.T.E.M. wing.
The school now includes a brand new, 118,000 s/f building which spans partially over the MBTA Green Line’s Brookline Hills Station. The building, which places a special focus on physics, features lab space, classrooms for general use, dedicated event space, dining and food service areas, a library, and various collaboration spaces. Skanska also demolished a large portion of the existing high school in order to build a new, 70,000 s/f S.T.E.M. wing addition, featuring biology and chemistry labs and classrooms, collaboration and maker spaces, a culinary arts kitchen, and student restaurant/café seating.
“S.T.E.M. education opens doors for students to pursue any job they want in any industry. In construction especially, skillsets learned through S.T.E.M. education are imperative to our daily operations,” said Bryan Northrop, executive vice president and general manager for Skanska USA in Boston. “Building what matters to the communities in which we work is important and fulfilling to all of us at Skanska, and we’re proud to deliver this crucial educational cornerstone to the town of Brookline alongside our partners from Skanska Civil.”
Skanska’s building and civil construction teams worked closely with project architect, Willian Rawn Associates, project manager, Hill International, and the town to expand BHS through the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic while school was in session.
The team was wildly successful in what was expected to be the greatest challenge of the project — building over an active MBTA Green Line — which required the installation of new catenary structures, the relocation of existing signal and communication cables, and the temporary relocation of the fare collection shelter and equipment among other safety and structural necessities. Skanska drew on its past experience in complex infrastructure projects to create a safe and efficient plan for construction. In order to complete the project as planned, Skanska’s team worked from 10 pm on Fridays to 2 am on Sundays for nearly all 25 weekends through the summer of 2021, in addition to multiple 24/7 surge periods, and assisted the MBTA and the Town of Brookline in weekend train diversions, to successfully rebuild the station.
“A good education is an invaluable tool that can unlock a future with endless possibilities,” said Anthony Meyers, Head of School at Brookline High School. “The new additions to BHS, particularly the S.T.E.M. wing and expanded classroom and collaboration spaces, will allow our students to obtain an enriched education that will continue to serve them for the rest of their lives.”
The completed expansion of Brookline High School was well timed as the Town of Brookline is anticipating enrollment to reach nearly 2,100 students for the 2022 – 2023 school year, up from 1,774 in 2013 when the campus revitalization project was first being explored. The school in its increased capacity is now well positioned to welcome hundreds of students within the district to learn in a comfortable and inspiring environment.
For decades, Skanska has worked to build and improve schools and universities around Greater Boston and New England. Some past projects include the construction of Harvard Law School’s Wasserstein Hall, Caspersen Student Center and Clinical Wing (WCC), the construction of a new recreation center at Boston College and a new athletic center at Deerfield Academy. These projects, and many more, demonstrate Skanska’s local knowledge and global expertise, leveraged to bolster local transportation and energy infrastructure, and shape the New England region’s major institutional, commercial, healthcare and life sciences facilities.