Sunrise River Elementary School

North Branch, Minnesota

Program requirements were to create small, personalized learning communities within a large facility and to create a vital community resource.

A pinwheel design of three mixed-grade houses are situated around a media center. Mixed-grade houses provide flexibility for future changes in enrollment. Classrooms cluster around shared group-learning areas. ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMClark EngineeringCAPACITY1,000COST PER SQ FT$185.74FEATURED IN2008 Architectural Portfolio is integrated with document cameras, audio enhancement, LCD projectors, computer work stations, portable laptop labs and smart boards.

To plan for future changes in grade configurations, the classroom house design is easily adaptable for kindergarten use.

An entrance colonnade provides access to all public areas of the facility for community use, while also separating students from public access. After-hours secure zones invite community use of the cafeteria, gym, media center and meeting spaces.

Durable, low-maintenance terrazzo and burnished block were used throughout. Blue terrazzo borders the circulation areas, representing a “river” theme and the school’s namesake. Classroom communities are distinguished by different color schemes, and soffits with signage label different spaces clearly.

To minimize energy consumption, automated lighting, occupancy sensors, variable-air-

volume systems and daylighting were incorporated throughout.

Sustainable qualities, timeless design and efficiency make Sunrise River Elementary School a source of community pride.