The new Salisbury Memorial Elementary School for grades pre-K to 5 brings together 850 pupils and teachers who previously were housed in three separate buildings varying in age from 50 to 100 years.
Occupying a 22-acre wooded site, but severely constricted by protected wetlands, the design combines one- and two-story construction, tightly configured to reduce ground CAPACITY850COST PER SQ FT$122.00FEATURED IN2003 Architectural Portfolio and maximize outdoor play space.
Because it is a large elementary school, efforts were made to mitigate its impact on younger children. Preschool and kindergarten children are situated on one level in an autonomous but attached early-childhood wing with parent dropoff and entry separate from the main entrance of the school. Grades 1 to 5 are accommodated on two levels in clusters of three to four classrooms per grade, each with its own commons, toilets, and dedicated rooms for teacher planning, special education and tutoring.
As the major public building in this small town, the school serves both students and the community at large. Access to the rotunda-shaped library, cafetorium and gym can be independent from the academic wings of the school, preserving building security and enhancing public use.