Vinalhaven School is a new 57,000-square-foot K-12 school on Vinalhaven Island, 15 miles off the Maine coast.
The program included a K-12 school, the entire school district and a superintendent’s office—all within one building. The design incorporated separate “islands” for grades K to 2, 3 to 5, middle school and high school, as well as a discovery island. Islands CAPACITY300COST PER SQ FT$202.00FEATURED IN2004 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSpecialized off a centrally situated library—the heart of the school. This concept evolved from the idea that although islands seem separate from the mainland, they all are connected below the water’s surface. Grades are separated into building wings but remain connected through the library.
Logistically, it was a challenge to design and build a project on an island several miles from the mainland because of material delivery and timing constraints.
Energy costs on the island are high; therefore, efficient systems and a building envelope design was critical. Daylighting techniques were used, including skylights and clerestories for interior spaces. Heat-recovery units, sensors to control lighting and ventilation, and in-floor radiant heat were provided. Natural finishes and “green” materials were used throughout.