The new 51,761 square-foot auditorium and related music classroom facility opened to Choate students and faculty in September of 2019. The geometry of the building as well as its sculptural quality are in keeping the adjacent Paul Mellon Arts Center (PMAC), completed in 1972 and designed by I.M. Pei.
Colony Hall features a 1,070-person auditorium, designed to accommodate the numerous and varied program needs of the school including regular school-wide meetings and orchestral/vocal performances. A 100-seat recital hall offers both rehearsal and performance space, as well as additional practice rooms, classrooms, a percussion studio, and a green room. A dance studio is located on the upper floor and overlooks the school’s expansive Great Lawn. As flexibility was a primary goal for the project, nearly all rehearsal and performance spaces throughout the building were designed to double as classrooms when needed. Also at the forefront of the building’s design was acoustical isolation for almost every space.
Regarding building systems, the facility is all-electric, consuming no fossil fuels directly on site. Kohler Ronan’s designs called for heating and cooling to be provided via a closed loop geothermal well-field and a series of water-to-water heat pumps. Energy recovery and demand control ventilation systems were integrated into all of the main air handling units, while a 40kW-PV array was installed on the roof of the building to supplement power consumption. The building is LEED Gold certified, thus fulfilling a critical sustainability goal for the project.
Robert A.M. Stern Architects
51,761 square feet
LEED Gold Certified (Design)
Photo credit: © Peter Aaron/OTTO for Robert A.M. Stern Architects