Wesley Alumni House
The Pennington School | Pennington, New Jersey
Lowelldon at The Pennington School is the original headmaster’s house from the 1850’s but had been converted into offices for the Admissions Department and a small second-floor apartment over the years. After the Admissions Department moved to a more suitable space in the school’s Old Main, part of a long-term series of projects from the VMA comprehensive campus plan, the fate of the building was uncertain until a grassroots campaign convinced the school to literally relocate and restore the house.
Working from the original residential layout, VMA created a series of office and meeting spaces to convert the building into the school’s new Alumni and Development offices, and, in doing so, remained sensitive to its historic character while modernizing its systems.
To do this, insensitive additions were replaced with more appropriate designs. Windows, heating, and cooling systems were completely replaced to achieve modern energy efficiency. The porch was reconstructed based on historic photos while also incorporating full accessibility. All exterior siding, trim, and brackets were replaced with low-maintenance, Hardiplank and polymer products. Basic paint analysis determined the colors that most closely matched the original intent – with the notable addition of a vibrant red, one of the school’s signature colors.
The Pennington Historical Commission, Historic Preservation Award, 2014
Size: 3,100 sf
Architecture, Interior Design, Historical Preservation, Landscape