the Neighborhood Design Center

This Community Design Works project for the Foundation for the Advancement of Music and Education (FAME), a nonprofit music academy in Prince George’s County, had amazing results.

FAME wanted to create a welcoming space at Henry Wise High School for students to learn, collaborate, and create. They also needed to have access to the existing studios and band rooms in the school. The space would have multiple purposes: Administrative Office Space during school hours, STEM Tutoring Music Theory & Computer Technology Instruction after school and on the weekend, College & Career Planning Staff & Board Meetings and Seminars.

Working with a group of stakeholders that included staff, students, parents and board members the existing space was transformed into a music technology lab with an informal hang out space and various artworks on the walls and windows.

FAME hopes to replicate this service at other schools in Prince George’s County, they would like to take the ideas generated in the design at Dr Henry Wise to inform the design of future FAME spaces.

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Our architecture and interior design projects work at the intersection of design-industry leading practices, and the community wants and needs. We believe the more participation and input, the better the design. For this particular project, we need community engagement workshops to hear from the community and youth of the school. Through those efforts, together, we identified the vision for the space, produced options that reflected what we heard, and delivered design documents that could be used to fundraise and apply for grants.

With help from our stellar interns, Judy and Nasir, we worked with the FAME partners and youth to make this space a reality. Prince George’s County Department of Housing & Community Development helped fund the project.

Sophie Morley (NDC) with Fame Staff and CEO Toni Lewis. Credit FAME.