New Mexico School for the Arts
Santa Fe, N.M. 
Project Of The Year Finalist And Best Project

Owner: New Mexico School for the Arts - Art Institute
Architect of Record: Studio Southwest Architects
General Contractor: Klinger Constructors LLC
Civil Engineer: Bohannan Huston Inc.
Structural Engineer: Luchini Trujillo Structural Engineers Inc.
MEP Engineer: BG Buildingworks Inc.
Architectural Design Consultant: Lake | Flato Architects
Landscape Architect: Surroundings Studio LLC

The 330-student New Mexico School for the Arts consolidates academic, administrative and performing-arts areas into both new and renovated spaces. These include the multistructure, 120-year-old SanBusCo Market Center, originally used a commercial railroad structure.

A former lumber facility emerged as a “paseo”—or walkway—leading to classrooms and studios while doubling as the school’s main gathering space. The original lumber facility office hosts visual art exhibitions. Art studios occupy northern portions of the paseo, and music studios are sited within the shell of a former store.

Work on the historic structures presented numerous challenges, notably missing structural elements such as footings, stem walls, beams and columns. As the project proceeded, the design team and contractor worked to overcome numerous unforeseen conditions while maintaining the goals, budget and schedule.

During construction, Klinger Constructors performed materials testing, did weekly inspections and issued sign-off sheets to ensure that installed components met specifications.

The project team also created mock-ups for a dance floor, general flooring and major finishes. Weekly site walk-throughs included Klinger, designer Studio Southwest Architects and school officials to further ensure quality and remedy deficiencies.

Klinger issued a software-based master schedule to track all critical tasks, owner furnished items and design, approval, fabrication and delivery dates for all materials. A superintendent issued three-week look-ahead schedules that detailed all upcoming trade tasks and materials required on site.

The project was completed in time for the fall 2019 semester.

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