The Barn Student Center

Millbrook School | Millbrook, New York

A dairy barn, one of the original structures purchased by the Pulling family when they established Millbrook School, had been converted over time into a gym, theater, and student hang-out. With disconnected floors and functions that didn’t serve one another, the structure seemed too disjointed for renovation and was poised to be torn down.

However, sentiment for the building led to a collaborative design process with VMA and the school, producing a design to create a student center that would be open, attractive, and subtly monitored with an appropriate mix of functions. Moreover, it would be a place that felt safe and shared but with a sense of student ownership.

Removing a section of the second floor connected the interior spaces visually and spatially. The snack bar seating area is open to the game/lounge area on the second floor with soaring ceilings and the hominess of the exposed, heavy timbers. College Advising and the school store both open onto a seating area. A meeting room, student activities offices, counseling offices, and the TV lounge open on to the main lounge area. A terrace was created on the roof of the kitchen addition. The barn is also LEED Gold Certified, ensuring the space reflects both the history of the school and its vision for a more sustainable future.


LEED Gold Certified
AIA Philadelphia Chapter, Merit Award - Preservation, 2014
Traditional Building Magazine, Palladio Award - Adaptive Reuse/Sympathetic Addition, 2014


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Size: 11,000 sf
Budget: $7.1 million


Architecture, Interior Design, Historical Preservation, Planning, Landscape, Sustainability

The Barn Student Center

Millbrook School | Millbrook, New York

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