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33 Hawley Street
Northampton, MA 01060

Transformations — renovations begin @33 Hawley


Transformations — renovations begin @33 Hawley

Northampton Community Arts Trust

After many months of planning and preparation, the Northampton Community Arts Trust is elated to say that this week marks the start of a new chapter in the story that is the development of 33 Hawley Street into a protected, permanent space for creative work in downtown Northampton. Our plans for Hawley Street envision three distinct phases to the renovation of the building and development of various spaces for creative work. The first phase in this process begins this week and will focus on the building's skeleton and exterior. 
One of our architects described 33 Hawley as a “metal tent,” and it is a fair description. In its current state, Hawley Street is a thin-skinned metal building that envelopes a great deal of space, but offers only minimal thermal insulation. Our vision sees Hawley as an affordable multi-use arts facility, and a crucial element of affordability is the creation of a robust, efficient and sustainable envelope for the spaces within. Thus, the decidedly unsexy business of engineering and developing an energy-efficient building is our first order of business. Anticipated costs for this phase of renovations are approximately $2 million. This is a critical first step investment that will help ensure the future of the building. A second phase of renovation will focus on creating interior spaces and enabling occupancy, while a third and final phase will see a community-informed design and development of a black box theater. Anticipated costs through the end of phase two currently stand at roughly $5 million.

For this initial phase, interior demolition will carve out and partially define spaces for a future black box theater, mezzanine, staircase and elevator shaft. Following this, we will strip the exterior skin and add new steel trusses to enhance the building's structure. As new steel work is finished, rigid insulated panels will replace the thin metal skin and sagging battens of insulation that currently wrap the building. We also will replace the roof at this time and commence work on installing a photovoltaic system sized to more than meet the anticipated electric needs of the building. The building should be buttoned up by year’s end.
Grant awards from the Massachusetts Office of Finance and Administration's  “Promoting Community Development and Tourism in Central and Western Massachusetts” grant program; the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s Cultural Facilities Fund; C&S Wholesale Grocers; the Beveridge Family Foundation; and the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts along with gifts and private financing from generous individuals have allowed us to embark on this critical phase of the project. Additional fundraising for this stage of the project is underway and will continue throughout and beyond the completion of renovation. For more details, hop over to our design page.
So that's it for the moment. We will keep you updated …