A K-12 building program was developed for this small school district. Although this program would help minimize operating costs and facilitate sharing of staff, concern existed over having kindergarten and high school students in the same building.
The challenge was to provide a single efficient facility that supports a high-quality educational program while CAPACITY1,263COST PER SQ FT$108.52FEATURED IN2003 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSpecialized age-appropriate separation of students.
The K-12 design centered on a multi-functional activities core with two-story classroom wings on each side. Elementary students are on one side and middle/high school students on the other. Vertical circulation at the juncture of the wings and core allows convenient access to the media center, cafeterias, gyms and the bus-loading area.
Cafeterias sized independently for each wing are placed side by side and divided by a folding wall during the school day. For special events, the folding wall is opened to create a larger cafetorium venue.
A single multimedia center is accessible from both wings. Vaulted reading bays and stack sections separate the educational levels in the media center, while allowing students access to all media materials.
Connecting the middle and high school gymnasiums via an open mezzanine level allows flexibility for activities and sporting events. This provides additional space for physical-education classes and activities seating for either gym. At floor level, the gyms are separated by locker rooms below the mezzanine.
Other design features:
-A spacious courtyard allows for outdoor educational space or for social gatherings.
-A manmade ecological wetland is situated on a remote part of the site, which allows for scientific observation and hands-on interaction with nature.
The single-building campus works for this district. It contributes to many educational opportunities that go beyond those available in the traditional concept of separate buildings.