JA Whitted School

This project was a renovation and addition to the historic JA Whitted School in Durham. Originally constructed in the 1920s as the first African American Junior High in Durham and later added on to in the 1950s, this school was vacant from 2005 until 2015 when construction began to convert the building into a multi-use, multi-generational LIHTC project.

In the existing building, asbestos and lead paint abatement preceded demolition which was contracted separately from the HUD ‘new construction’ contract. PME systems, life safety deficiencies, building envelope, and structure were all addressed. New mechanical, plumbing, sprinkler, and electrical systems were installed throughout the historic building. Improved utilities were run to the site including water, storm drain, and sanitary sewer. A sand filter was installed, and the entire site was re-graded to prepare for the 200+ parking lot, community garden, playground, and accessible paths. Fencing, exterior lighting, way-finding updates, new stairs, and landscaping improved the aesthetic appeal. Original windows were refurbished with new glazing. Other historic architectural details including plaster walls, transom lights, trim, and hardwood floors were retained and restored.

The addition is comprised of 32 apartments, a billiard room, lounge, business center, offices, outdoor patio, and community laundry area. An additional 47 apartments were up-fitted in the existing building along with a salon, wellness center, fitness room, auditorium, gymnasium, community kitchen, and an eight-classroom preschool with a warming kitchen.

  • Location: Durham, NC
  • Cost: $10,904,986
  • Size: 134,574 sq. ft.
  • Year: 2016
  • Duration: 365 days
  • Owner: Whitted School Redevelopment, LLC
  • Architect/Engineer: Belk Architecture
  • Categories: Historic, LIHTC, Mixed-Use