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Northeast Design Review Case Report


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Project Information

Northeast Case #  NE 2016-009

Address: 18400 Schenely Ave
Company: Cobalt Group
Architect: Then Design

Seeking approval for new construction of a brick and masonry school building.


Committee Actions/Submissions

Date: April 7, 2016
Committee: Staff
Action Type: Initial Plan Submission
Date: April 12, 2016
Committee: Local Design Review Committee
Action Type: Approved

Voting Members Present

  • B. Chew
  • P. Brown (2nd)
  • E. Turner (CH)
  • S. Nieswander (1st)
  • N. Turner


Project was presented by Patti Chobi (Cobalt) and Marissa Butts/Jeff Henderson (THENDesign-CEDA).  Presented some basic background info on the proposed demolition before moving into the new construction.  Councilman Polensek, Mary Louise Daley, and John Boksansky (NES) available for comment during the meeting.


Committee Comments, Questions, Concerns

  • Why this shade of blue color?  Can you include more windows, those seem small for the building? 
  • Perhaps adding depth to the windows, brick handing, and building to add shadow play.
  • What are the plans for the stormwater management?  Can you be more creative in how you manage the stormwater?
  • What are the classroom ceiling heights?  Agree that incoporating more windows would be good.
  • Suggestion to incorporate original OH Perry signage into the wall of the new building instead of using it as a monument sign/seating area as proposed.
  • Would like to see additional stonework and the wrought iron fence salvaged from the original building and incorporated into the new facility.


Councilman Polensek commented that this has been a very involved process to come up with the new design and that the neighborhood has a real fondness for the school and the history that it represents.  Would like to see architectural details incorporated into the new building.  Would like to the design team to work with the NEORSD to look at additional stormwater controls.


Motion to approve as presented by all voting members present.  Will need to return with a full landscape plan, exterior lighting, specs on any fencing treatment.

Date: May 6, 2016
Committee: City Planning Commission
Action Type: Conceptual Approval
Date: May 10, 2016
Committee: Staff
Action Type: Initial Plan Submission
Date: May 17, 2016
Committee: Local Design Review Committee
Action Type: Approved

Voting Members Present

  • B. Chew (1st)
  • A. Luckascy
  • E. Turner (CH)
  • R. Nieswander
  • N. Reich
  • P. Brown (2nd)


Project presented by Hollie Dellasanti of CMSD and Jeff Henderson of CEDA/ThenDesign.  Presentation focused on how the final development plan addressed the comments from the NE Design Review Committee made during the Apr 12th 2016 meeting.  Additonal landscaping has been incorpoarated along the street and around the stormwater basin/community gardens.  CMSD will salvage the wrought iron fencing for future use on other projects, but it will no be re-used at this site.  The re-use of stonework from Longfellew school is now on hold.  The future and possible redevelopment of Longfellow is now in discussions with CMSD, CRS, and the City Councilmembers.  There was additional thought on how to better intergrate architectural details from the original OH Perry into the new building.  Since the construction of the new school and the demolition of the original school are happening in tandem, there is difficulty in removing details and adding them into the new construction.  In regards to the shadow play and the brick banding, the development plan is now showing random brick bands that will be inset about an inch to create additional shadows on the building.



Committee Comments, Questions, and Concerns

  • Why does the banding stop in in a cerntain location on the building?
  • The inspiration from the fresnel lighting was appreciated, but it seems like that design feature is too abstract and it gets lost in the facade treatments.
  • What is the purpose of the 4' high metal OH Perry at the E. 185th/east elevation?
  • Why is the signage inconsistent between the elevations? OH Perry vs Oliver Hazard Perry?
  • Concerned about the choice of color of the metal signage against the brick material.  Wondering if it will be legible since its not illuminated.
  • Metal sign should be brushed aluminum.
  • Why do the classrooms only have two windows?  More windows were incorporated into the specialized learning areas.
  • Do you have enough bike racks to service the school.
  • What is the capacity of the school? 470 students.
  • Suggestion to not alternate tree species along streetscape.  Also reconsider the redbuds because they prefer an alkaline environment.  Check variety of trees because what i shown will grow up to about 20' tall.
  • Consider keeping the emergency exit and service areas in tan color, not blue as shown in the plans.
  • Still concerns about the number of windows in each classroom and the brick banding for the shadow play is too random (AL).
  • Discussion to remove the clerestory windows from the gym space and add 4-8" to the windows shown in the classrooms.


John Boksansky in attendance from Northeast Shores Development Corp.  NSDC in support of the new facility.


Motion to approve with conditions to change the color of the metal sign to a more visible color against the brick facade, reconsider the alternating trees along the streetscapes, reconsider the choice of using the redbark location in a non-acidic location, reconsider the size and species of the 4" caliper trees at the service entrance, keep the emergency doors and service doors painted tan, and decide the final location of the signage when the clerestory windows are removed.  (Voted 5-1)

Date: May 20, 2016
Committee: City Planning Commission
Action Type: Approved with Conditions

Add a few more bike racks.