Hubbell Elementary was originally built in 1910. Additions were constructed in 1917 to the South, 1925 to the North, and 1971 to the West (the predecessor firm of Keffer/Overton designed the 1917 addition). Hubbell Elementary represented an opportunity for the Des Moines School District to showcase a very visible example of how they are able to effectively preserve their historic neighborhood schools.
The craftsmen’s stylized structure is a perfect example of a traditional “red brick” school continuing to meet the needs of its children and neighborhood for many years to come. K/O updated the building’s mechanical and structural systems, with all new elements designed as a subtle backdrop to the rich original details that were preserved: beveled glass, oak trim, iron railings, intricate stonework, and detailed millwork. Panels above the original windows and doors were removed (which allowed light to spill back into the school after 30 years) then restored to match the original color and profile. As well as creating a state of the art learning environment, a historically beautiful structure and site were maintained through the process.