Payne Elementary School
Washington, D.C.
D.C. Public Schools, DGS
Completed under Paola Moya’s leadership as CEO of Marshall Moya Design

Payne Elementary School

Located on C Street in southeast Washington, Payne Elementary School is DC Public Schools’ flagship location for deaf, hearing impaired, and special education programs. Built in 1896, the school has served students from K–5 in Ward 6 for over a century. The original 83,800 sq. ft. building lost nearly a fifth of its structure after a fire. DCPS contracted our firm to repurpose spaces within the existing 68,000 sq. ft. school.
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This project included upgrades to both architecture and interior design. An interior bridge and an elevator linked the school’s two wings and made each level ADA accessible. We also made ADA improvements for the hearing impaired such as American Sign Language requirements. All colors, materials, and furniture provide an optimal environment for disabled and hearing-impaired students. Classrooms are right-sized with assistive technology that works with hearing aids to amplify sound.  Interactive, curriculum-based images in the corridors inspire learning outside the classroom. The project included new finishes and HVAC systems for the dining hall and auditorium. Further, by using sustainable technologies and green initiatives, Payne Elementary School achieved LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.