Academy of the Sacred Heart has completed additional renovations to its Uptown campus.
Phase 1B of the Rosary Renewal Project at the all-girls school ended right before Mardi Gras. It added four new classrooms averaging 450 square feet each and equipped them with the latest technology. A retractable wall between two of the classrooms can lift and create a larger area where students can gather for speaker presentations and discussions.
Workers relocated a hallway along Jena Street that now overlooks the courtyard. New student lockers are recessed in the walls and give the renovated space more functionality, and new HVAC and electrical systems have been installed.
The highlight of this phase of the project is the 900-square-foot Global Education Center. The space consists of a 136-inch “DigiWall” with Bluetooth capabilities that can project audio and visuals from one of ASH’s sister schools around the world. There are microphones imbedded in the ceiling that can pick up a student speaking from anywhere in the room and send the crisp sound with no delay to the person listening on the screen.
Head of School Micheline Dutil said this space would house a special set of new and existing courses that students will cycle through. Courses include world history, world geography, geopolitical conflicts and learning of different cultures.
“This is really about raising awareness to what it means to be a global citizen,” Dutil said. “This will allow them to learn more about what is beyond Louisiana and the rest of the United States.”
Hurricane Ida caused some slight setbacks to the project. Dutil said the storm resulted in water intrusion through some of the older bricks in the building. Some roof shingles, shutters and doors were blown off and had to be replaced, she said.
Dutil said supply chain issues caused delays in furniture and carpeting for the new space.
Phase 1A of ASH’s renovation consisted of interior demolition and space planning. Phase 1C, which started March 2, will include the renovation of more classrooms. Additional phases will include other wings of the school.
Project: Transformation of the second floor of the eastern wing into a new Global Education Center and four new classrooms
Address: 4521 St. Charles Ave.
Owner: Academy of the Sacred Heart
Architect: Blitch Knevel Architects
General Contractor: Ryan Gootee General Contractors
Space: 4,500 square feet
Cost: $5 million for all of Phase 1
Start date: July 2021
Completion date: February 2022