Elkhorn Ridge Middle School’s academic area resembles a “town square” with raised ceilings allowing the intake of natural light. It is a one-level facility designed for students in grades 6 to 8. Three commons areas are situated within the classroom “town square,” giving students space to work in small groups. Each grade is color-coded, and all three grades surround CAPACITY600COST PER SQ FT$103.30FEATURED IN2004 Architectural Portfolio and special-education classroom hubs. Exploratory areas are housed at the square’s fourth corner.
The gym and cafeteria function as one or as separate spaces. A track wall and a change in floor elevation divide the two areas. The result is great flexibility for various seating layouts for performing and sporting activities by the school and the community. Music facilities are situated conveniently to support the performance feature of the gym and cafeteria. Independent entrances can be opened to select areas without opening the entire building.
The HVAC equipment is on the second floor in the center of the square. Heating and cooling is provided by a geothermal deep-well, ground-source heat-exchanger system.