Monahan Hall

DATE: 2008
LOCATION: Lakeville, Connecticut, USA
OLD USE: School gymnasium
NEW USE: School offices, residential apartments


This building built in 1938 once served the Hotchkiss School in Lakeview, Connecticut, as its gymnasium. The 23,000-square foot Georgian-style building, designed by Henry S. Waterbury of the architectural firm Delano & Aldrich, was named after the school’s Athletic Director Otto Monahan who retired in 1941. As the center of sports for the school, it was active for 94 years before shutting down in 2002.[1]


The Hotchkiss School is an independent boarding school located in Lakeville, Connecticut. Founded in 1891, classes are provided for grades 9 through 12 as well as some postgraduates.[2] The co-educational institution has embraced LEED Certification as the objective for all its buildings, new and renovated.[3]

Butler Rogers Baskett is a New York-based architectural firm specializing in the design of facilities for institutions of higher education and independent schools, professional and corporate office interiors, sports and club facilities, and specialty retail and historic preservation projects. The firm’s educational practice is committed to a sustainable future.[4]


Hotchkiss had originally considered razing the building soon after it stopped using it for athletics. Thanks to the efforts by alumni and others, the school reconsidered the plans and developed a new program.[5] The completely gutted and renovated gymnasium is now home to a new multi-use program of flexible spaces for the alumni and development departments, two residential apartments for visiting faculty and space for the school’s new Center for Global Understanding and Independent Thinking. The project team was successful in receiving Gold LEED Certification for the adaptive reuse project.

BRB chose LEED New Construction Version 2.1 for this project because the design completely changed the building’s program. Monahan’s LEED scorecard includes: Sustainable Sites – 5 points, Water Efficiency – 4 points, Energy & Atmosphere – 8 points, Materials and Resources – 7 points, Indoor Environmental Quality – 10 points, and Innovation and Design Process – 5 points, for a total of 40 points, one more than the 39-point Gold threshold.

The building’s brick façade, thick walls, generous windows, southern exposure, and slate roof provided an excellent framework for innovations in energy-efficiency. Sustainable features include:

  • Water-efficient landscaping, using no potable water
  • Water use reduction, 40% beyond baseline
  • Energy performance, 25% beyond baseline for existing buildings
  • Building reuse, maintaining 75% of existing shell
  • 10% recycled content, 20% regional materials
  • Controllability of systems
  • Daylight for 75% of spaces, views for 90% of spaces
  • 100% green power
  • Green cleaning and housekeeping[6]

[1]The Hotchkiss School
[2]The Hotchkiss School
[5]The Hotchkiss School

Images courtesy of Butler Rogers Baskett.