When the graduating class of 2008 decided to convert an overlooked campus passage into a gathering space for future classes, Choate Rosemary Hall asked Apicella + Bunton to develop a concept to turn the circulation space between the Student Activities Center and Hart Pool into a vibrant new courtyard for organized events or casual meetings. The result is the Senior Spot, the main feature of which is a 104-foot, undulating solid surface bench which runs the length of the courtyard.

Senior Spot, Choate Rosemary Hall

Wallingford, CT
4,000 sq ft

To minimize site work, the bench replaces one stripe of the site's existing grid of 24-inch concrete pavers. Additional pavers have been replaced with modular recycled plastic trays planted with a variety of perennials, which minimize storm water runoff on the roof deck.

Donor names have been cut from a photoluminescent material and inlaid into the bench's surface so that they are integral to the undulating form.

After dark, the names emit a blue glow, softly lighting the courtyard and reminding passersby of the students and friends of Choate who made this very special space possible.

The project won the 2009 Surface Fabrication Achievement in Design award in the commercial/industrial category.

The Choate News, "Senior Spot Construction Finished"
Choate Alumni News, "Senior Spot Groundbreaking"
The Choate News, "2008 Committee Hopes to Revamp SAC Patio"
Choate Bulletin, "Choate's Senior Spot Bench"
International Solid Surface Fabricators Association, "Senior Class"
Surface Fabrication, "Design Show Delivers Excellence"
The Fabricator Network, "Sterling Surfaces Takes Top Awards"

Photographs © Jeff Baumgart/Sterling Surfaces