SSA Selects Architects for Senior School Science Center

Shady Side Academy has announced the selection of award-winning architectural firm Frederick Fisher and Partners (FFP) to design the new center for science and innovation on its Senior School campus in Fox Chapel.

"We like Fred Fisher's group because they pay so much attention to the campus and institutional contexts when designing buildings," said Academy President Tom Cangiano. "Our hope is that this new center for science and innovation will capture the great history and tradition of Shady Side, while at the same time making it clear that the Academy is stepping quite boldly into the 21st century."

FFP will design plans for an innovative building to house the Senior School Science Department, including classrooms and labs for physics, biology and chemistry, collaboration and maker spaces for student research and the Science Olympiad team, and faculty offices. The building will be roughly 20,000 square feet and sit along the campus entrance drive, just before McCune Library. Detailed architectural drawings are expected in spring 2015. The building's construction schedule will be dependent on fundraising efforts, which are currently underway.

FFP Team
The Fred Fisher and Partners team

Based in Los Angeles, FFP is an internationally recognized firm with an extensive portfolio. Principal Fred Fisher is an award-winning architect with more than 30 years of experience – and the husband of SSA alumna Jennifer Prebor '81. FFP's educational clients include the University of Virginia, Princeton University, Colby College, Caltech and Oberlin College. One of their most recent projects is the science education and research facility at the Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences in Santa Monica, Calif., which is currently under construction. Learn more about FFP at

FFP was one of two architectural firms invited to bid on the science facility. The firms conducted an extensive discovery process that included meetings and discussions with a steering committee of teachers, students, administrators and trustees in spring 2014. In September 2014 both firms made excellent presentations to the steering committee, and in November the Buildings and Grounds Committee of the Board of Trustees voted to select FFP as project architects.

"Fred's desire to do something really special for the Academy, particularly because of his wife's status as an alumna, was evident from day one," said Jonathan Kamin '91, vice chair of the board for buildings and grounds and chair of the science center steering committee. "We were impressed by Frederick Fisher and Partners' thoughtful design, commitment to the steering committee and to the campus. We look forward to a great collaborative effort."

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