Bancroft Elementary School, located in the District’s Mount Pleasant neighborhood, provides 550 students with a premier, dual language education. Its urban campus, constructed over 40 years, consists of five historic buildings. Although they are adjoining, the levels do not align properly due to the site’s steep terrain. To overcome this challenge, Ayers Saint Gross, in partnership with Fielding Nair International, simplified access to the school’s learning spaces with a modern addition. Two new academic wings provide classrooms and courtyards with improved daylighting and complement the scale of the area’s Renaissance Revival style architecture.
The new construction is connected to the original buildings through the Calle Mayor, which means “Main Street” in Spanish. This central spine unifies shared spaces, including the cafeteria, media center, multipurpose room, and nature center, through ramps and elevators. Inspired by the meandering streets of an old Spanish town, each destination on this path is treated as a unique opportunity for enrichment, academic achievement, and cultural appreciation.