Plans are underway to modernize the former David T. Howard School as a new home for Inman Middle
STORY: Claire Ruhlin
Old Fourth Ward’s former David T. Howard School on Randolph Street went from elementary school to surplus building when it closed its doors to students in 1976. Originally opened in 1923, it has a notable history: Martin Luther King, Jr. attended as a student from 1936 to 1940, and in 1948, the institution became Atlanta’s second African American high school.
Now, plans are underway to renovate the building and its 7.5-acre campus, transforming them into a new home for Inman Middle School, which is currently facing overcrowding issues.
While this transformation will bring the building into the 21st century with state-of-the-art classrooms and modern amenities, care will be taken to preserve the school’s history. Local architectural firms Stevens & Wilkinson and Lord Aeck Sargent are on board to complete the project that will maintain the structure’s original core and key features.
New additions will include a network of bioretention cells to filter surface runoff, pedestrian and bicycle routes from the BeltLine’s Eastside Trail and Freedom Parkway, and additional parking spaces for staff and visitors. The renovated school is projected to open in 2020, serving 1,375 sixth, seventh and eighth graders in 55 classrooms.