Sweetwater Union High School, Administration, Theater and Library Complex

National City, California

  • FIRM

    BCA Architects


    Sweetwater Union High School District

  • AREA

    81,000 sq.ft.





Sweetwater Union High School has been a proud and important part of the National City community for a long time. However, because of the lack of space and long-term planning, visitors and users have had difficulty navigating and accessing spaces on campus.

This design updated campus circulation and safety while consolidating ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY917COST PER SQ FT$376.00FEATURED IN2009 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYRenovation and administration functions in Building 100, which is designed to LEED gold certification. The new master plan and gateway building respond to, and juxtapose against, historical cues at this 89-year-old high school. Placed at the campus edge, and housing student services, classrooms, a library and a theater, the three-story building frees up needed open space at the campus center.

Along the building’s extended 430-square-foot facade, a central tower resembling the original Mission Revival building on site marks the campus entrance; as counterpoint, a transparent glass curtainwall wraps the 250-seat theater and state-of-the-art classroom wings.

Facing a busy street, the building’s civic appearance and iconic tower are responsive to past context and students’ future needs.