Pace Academy Kam Memar Lower School Addition and Renovation

Atlanta, Ga.

Award of Merit, K-12 Education

Submitted By: New South Construction Co.

Owner: Pace Academy

Lead Design Firm: tvsdesign

General Contractor: New South Construction Co.

Civil Engineer: Breedlove Land Planning

Structural Engineer: Uzun + Case

MEP Engineer: Johnson, Spellman, & Associates

Project Manager: Cameron Thomas

Subcontractors: UDS Development Services

A fixture in the heart of Atlanta’s Buckhead district since the 1950s, Pace Academy has been transformed by a three-story, 36,500-sq-ft addition that contains two music rooms, science and makers classrooms, administrative offices and gymnasium. Combined with renovation of the existing Lower School with new media center and full-service kitchen, the project sustains Pace’s efforts to provide students with a safe, stimulating learning environment using the best available educational tools and technology.

Ensuring the new facilities enhanced the surrounding neighborhood was a top priority as well. Throughout the design process, Pace Academy and its design team repeatedly revised their plan to accomplish these goals.

A constrained construction site on an active campus located on one of the city’s busiest roads presented a host of logistical and safety challenges. Among them were limiting interference with local and school-specific traffic, synchronizing deliveries of materials and equipment to accommodate minimal storage and laydown space and coordinating off-site parking and shuttle service for workers. To keep the project on schedule when the COVID-19 pandemic shut down city inspection services, the project team enlisted a qualified third-party specialist to perform the necessary inspections.

Regular teamwide coordination meetings combined with advanced technology, including BIM and laser scans, proved instrumental in preventing conflicts with new and existing utilities, and ensuring delivery of higher-quality built project. The collaborative approach also helped address construction challenges, such as the disruption-free relocation of a cellular telecommunications tower and fiber optic line from the top of the existing Lower School to a new location.