Big Rapids High School

Big Rapids, Michigan

The layout of the academic areas needed to allow for an initial delivery of the curriculum in a departmental approach. The plan was to be flexible enough to accommodate a period of transition where simultaneous use of both styles of curriculum delivery could occur.

The exterior of the building includes a combination of dark-brown and tan bricks chosen to complement ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY808COST PER SQ FT$91.47FEATURED IN1999 Architectural Portfolio prairie grasses. The accenting of the student areas is done with a forest-green tile to cooordinate with the evergreens that overwhelm the back of the site.

The building is organized into two main sections: an academic and an arts/athletics area. The common area in the arts/athletics section has several assets: this area serves to promote student gathering; the space also serves as an open environment for a food court; the space provides an entry and gathering area for after-school events in the gym and auditorium.

The arts/athletics commons is connected via a spine to a second commons located within the heart of the academic section. This space serves to unify all the elements that provide the student with collaborative learning. The classrooms, media center, conferencing, counseling, teacher-planning areas and student services all communicate around this commons.

The flexibility and close proximity of all the spaces in the classroom wings creates several rooms that are located without an outside wall. A clerestory runs down the center of each wing to maintain the introduction of natural light into each classroom.

Photographer: ©Bill Lindhout Photography