The goal of the school board was clear: “Provide our ninth-grade students with a rigorous educational facility … one that is distinctive while focusing on becoming involved and knowledgeable with the resources and tools available to meet each student’s high school transitional social, emotional and educational needs ... encourage a sense of creativity, involvement CAPACITY1,200COST PER SQ FT$90.00FEATURED IN2005 Architectural Portfolio community.”
To that end, the spatial relationships, scale, lighting, detailing and finishes of this facility all serve to create this type of enhanced learning environment. Wall spaces in common areas such as the entry, main hallway intersections and stairways reflect core values such as leadership, respect, achievement, scholarship, perseverance, responsibility and excellence.
All design patterns are curvilinear, using clean, simple yet distinct colors, shapes and patterns. They create a sense of movement, spaciousness and timelessness. These patterns de-institutionalize the space and nurture an atmosphere of creativity, exploration and interaction as freshmen mingle with upperclassmen, teachers and administrative staff—building a sense of community and personal responsibility.
The project site is part of a tightly delineated campus. Through the careful use of materials and detailing, the exterior of the Freshman Center complements both the exterior of the high school and the nearby Pike Performing Arts Center.