2009-11-18 / Features

AIA Queens Chapter Meets At Frank Sinatra H.S.

Photo Jason D. Antos Susan T. Rodriguez, FAIA, design partner at Polshek Partnership Architects, reviews the ultra modern features of the new Frank Sinatra School of the Arts H.S. before members of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Queens chapter.  Photo Jason D. Antos Susan T. Rodriguez, FAIA, design partner at Polshek Partnership Architects, reviews the ultra modern features of the new Frank Sinatra School of the Arts H.S. before members of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Queens chapter. The Frank Sinatra School of the Arts H.S. was the setting for a meeting of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Queens chapter on Tuesday, November 10. The in-depth, behind the scenes look at the new public school included a lecture and walking tour.

Susan T. Rodriguez, a design partner at Polshek Partnership Architects, gave a slide show presentation discussing her design of the state of the art facility located in Astoria. “The design celebrates the school’s visual and performing arts curriculum,” Rodriguez said. At 147,000 square feet, the building’s price tag totaled $375 per square foot.

The evening’s program was the completion of the 2009 theme, “Connecting Queens: Fabric and Future”, established by Laura Heim, AIA Queens chapter president.

The building, which opened its doors last September, is a public high school cofounded by singer Tony Bennett and his wife, Susan Benedetto. Bennett and Benedetto raised most of the $78 million needed for the school, which is named for Bennett’s mentor and colleague and located just blocks from his boyhood home.

The high school, the student body of which numbers 728 students, boasts the Iris Cantor Roof Garden, which offers a remarkable view of the Manhattan skyline and had some of the evening’s guests wondering about any future plans of the building going green. “It is always a possibility,” Rodriguez said. “We are always exploring new ideas for improvement.”—Jason D. Antos

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