Eisenhower Elementary School Commons

Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

Eisenhower Elementary School accommodates pre-kindergarten to sixth-grade students. The design sought to minimize the impact and scale of a relatively large building designed for 600 students. The facility was designed as five building forms clustered around a “town center.” Two distinct two-story classroom buildings and a gymnasium, cafeteria and auditorium with their ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$137.16FEATURED IN2004 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYCommon Areas facades enclose a two-story commons that simulates a streetscape-type ambience.

Capped with a space frame structure, skylights along the faces of the facility make the structure appear to float like an umbrella over a courtyard. The volume of the “town center” connects the two stories to functionally work as one. The presence of exterior elements within the space allows the two landscaped nodes to appear as if they are outdoors, ensuring the use of an outdoor classroom all year. These common spaces are extensions of the general classrooms, and science and art areas.

The character of the streetscape is enhanced with vintage storefronts equipped with awnings. The “town center” concept is reinforced with a vintage clock in the center.

Passing through the space provides an adventure to the next educational experience.