The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Arts Center

Project Details

  • Type:
  • Education
  • Location:
  • Silver Spring, MD
  • Client:
  • Montgomery College
  • Completed:
  • August 2007


The merger of two schools of art with different philosophies and needs, this design-build adaptive reuse project converted an industrial bakery into a gathering space interconnecting different parts of Montgomery College’s Silver Spring campus. The design process became a tool to find common ground between different user groups by focusing on how a single design can address multi-faceted requirements. Wiencek + Associates Architects + Planners listened to faculty and staff at each stage of the process in order to create a comprehensive design that responded to their needs. This collaborative approach, synthesized through the budget and program, tested concepts by exposing them to a wide range of perspectives. The 87,000 SF facility also provides studio space for professional artists and office space for community organizations, as well as housing the college-wide computer system and a central plant serving the campus. The art studios take advantage of the dramatic existing ceiling heights, and a spectacular art gallery welcomes visitors to the school.

Awards + Recognition

Outstanding Project for Structural Renovations, 2009
Structural Engineers AssocIation of Metropolitan Washington