Decommissioned urban schools in the United States have become a problem despite well-intentioned efforts of federal, state and local authorities to reconstruct them. The challenge to school districts, superintendants, local and state authorities is threefold – one arising from the education policy and declining student enrollment. The second challenge is due to inadequate funds for maintenance and renovation of existing facilities. The third from the architectural point of view stemming from an architectural and technological modernity to avoid not so much the possibility of urban sprawl but possible clash of community interests. Urban Sprawl is defined as “The unplanned, uncontrolled spreading of urban development into areas adjoining the edge of a city” (The American, 2009). Thus the feasibility of reconstructing decommissioned urban schools and the subsequent challenge to the architect are associated with avoiding urban sprawl, spatial mismatch, technological modernity, and to enhance community interest and concerns.

The literature will review three case studies, (Boston, Georgia & Nevada, and Buffalo, NY). In 1997,Bostonfaced challenges in decreasing student enrollment, decommissioned urban schools, building abandonment, lack of public housing and related land use and sought creative alternatives. The second in Georgia and Nevada were compelled toward privatization due to unavailability of funds to abandon schools that are increasingly being supplanted by a system of accepting schools. The third, Buffalo Public School, (NY) No. 60 was identified by private investors as a prime candidate to create new urban senior housing. The directed project will provide the results of a literature review, case study development, conclusions and recommendations. The project identified areas of interest in articulating a strategic framework of analysis for the reconstruction of decommissioned urban schools in the United States utilizing the Buffalo NY School model.

Date of this Version



College of Technology

Department Head

Dr. Mark Shaurette, Ph.D.

Month of Graduation


Year of Graduation



Master of Science in Technology

Head of Graduate Program

Dr. Mark Shaurette, Ph.D.

Advisor 1 or Chair of Committee

Dr. Daphene Koch, Ph.D. Chair

Advisor 2

Dr. Mark Shaurette, Ph.D.

Advisor 3

Dr. Joseph Orczyk, Ph.D.

Committee Member 1

Dr. Daphene Koch, Ph.D. Chair

Committee Member 2

Dr. Mark Shaurette, Ph.D.

Committee Member 3

Dr. Joseph Orczyk, Ph.D.