On May 17, Pace Academy broke ground on The Arthur M. Blank Family Upper School, a 75,000-square-foot facility that will replace the current Upper School, constructed in 1961. The groundbreaking is a significant milestone in the school’s Aim High campaign, which surpassed its $32-million goal last month. The family of Atlanta Falcons Owner & Chairman and The Home Depot Co-Founder Arthur M. Blank contributed Aim High’s lead gift.
more features >
“The support of the entire Pace community for this project has been overwhelming,” said Head of School Fred Assaf. “Our campaign committee, led by Board members and Pace parents Elizabeth Richards and Robert Sheft, has worked tirelessly to achieve our fundraising goals and complete the last piece of our Long-Range Plan. It’s now time for our new Upper School to become a reality.”
Designed by Pace Academy alumnus Sandy Cooper of Collins Cooper Carusi Architects, The Arthur M. Blank Family Upper School will nearly double the space of the current Upper School and will include The Woodruff Library, a gift of Jane Woodruff and Buck and Ann Woodruff, as well as a 1,500-square-foot Student Commons, a College Counseling suite, an Academic Resource Center featuring private tutoring rooms and a learning lab, and state-of-the-art classrooms and science labs.
“As a Pace alumnus, I grew up in the current Upper School building,” said Tim Walsh ’81, Chair of the Pace Academy Board of Trustees. “My wife is a Pace alumna; my mother-in-law taught at Pace; my son is a member of the Class of 2012; and I have two current Pace students. Our family truly bleeds Pace blue. We couldn’t be more excited about the construction of this new facility and what it means for Pace Academy.”
The school’s Aim High campaign was led by a dedicated committee of current parents and parents of alumni, Life Trustees, grandparents, alumni, faculty and staff. One hundred-percent of the Pace Academy faculty, staff and Board of Trustees contributed to the campaign and, to date, more than 83 percent of Pace parents have participated.
“Pace is a very small community, so every gift to the Aim High campaign is important and has helped us reach our goals,” said Richards and Sheft. “We hope the entire Pace community is proud of this campaign. It has truly been a team effort.”
Pace has secured the necessary building permits for the project from the City of Atlanta and began constructing an “Academic Village” on its rear athletic fields this spring. The temporary facility will house Upper School students during the 2013-14 school year. The Upper School project is on schedule, and demolition of the existing structure will begin on May 25. The Arthur M. Blank Family Upper School will welcome students for the start of the 2014-15 school year.
Pictured from left to right are Tim Walsh, Robert Sheft, Elizabeth Richards, Arthur Blank and Fred Assaf.