Kimmerle Group Launches Morris Plains Elementary School For Educational Project
Gifted and Talented Fifth Grade Students Explore the Worlds of Architecture and Interior Design
Kimmerle Group (KG), a Harding-based multifaceted architectural/design organization with offices in the Chelsea district of NY, had collaborated with former Morris Plains Elementary School’s Gifted and Talented teacher, Matt Gottilla, for over a year to launch a special design project which began on March 16, 2017, for fifth grade students. KG’s Senior Director of Kimmerle Workspace, Meghan Barlotta, worked on a community outreach project to support the elementary school’s curriculum that focused on one-, two- and three- dimensional concepts. The collaboration signifies Kimmerle Group’s commitment for the enrichment of tomorrow’s future professional talent and a dedication to give back to the communities of which it serves.
Barlotta, with Kimmerle Workspace’s Assistant Project Manager Sarah Heffner, enhanced a lesson on creating floor plans and 3D-rendered models with the school’s present Gifted and Talented/Special Educator, Felicia Politi. “The goal was to have students gain a better understanding of materials and finishes and how they relate to architecture and interior design,” explained Barlotta.
Implementing the Project
Construction documents and images of finished office spaces were given in advance to Politi, who utilized the materials as an introduction to prepare the five students for KG’s presentation. The children were assigned with creating a client with five specific needs and they were responsible for addressing those needs in their design. Certain project highlights emphasized students’ abilities to assess client requirements. These themes included: creating a one-floor house to accommodate grandparents living with the family; constructing a large kitchen to support a mother’s affinity for cooking; designing rooms with varied interior designs to satisfy family dwellers’ varied tastes; using astroturf as flooring in one room since the occupant loved nature and building a mancave for a father.
On the day of the presentation, Barlotta and Heffner discussed materials and how finishes play an instrumental role in creating a space. They brought samples of various materials and showed finish boards that were used on actual projects. KG provided students with supplies to create their own design boards and cardstock to build a physical model. Students were met with individually to review their floor plans, 3D models and finishes they had applied. KG returned to the school to provide additional materials for the children to complete their projects.
“Since the presentation, students have been working on organizing their sample materials on boards and will soon create their physical models. Boys and girls are looking forward to having KG return in June to critique their final project,” said Politi.
The award-winning Kimmerle Group is comprised of six divisions, each with complementary specialties, including Kimmerle Newman Architects, Urban Studio, Real Estate Services, Workspace, Project Management and Branding. The multidisciplinary team, which was named the 2016 AIA NJ Architecture Firm of the Year, has established an outstanding reputation for its design and development work in corporate architecture and interiors, education, healthcare, urban design and planning, industrial and retail, private and multifamily housing and historic preservation. Kimmerle Group possesses a national project footprint and is active in the Tri-state area and across the United States. The firm’s headquarters in Harding Township, NJ is an NJBIA Good Neighbor Award winner for 2017, and CPE’s 2016 Distinguished Achievement Award for Best Design. The firm is also located in the Chelsea Arts district of New York City with offices at West 20th and 6th Avenue.
The Morris Plains Borough School, located at 500 Speedwell Avenue, instructs students from third through eighth grade and is part of a public school district that educates students from pre-k through eighth grade from Morris Plains, in Morris County, New Jersey. The district is committed to navigating a changing world by maintaining a standard of excellence and innovation for administration, faculty and students.