Though larger in square footage, the new Curtis Junior High School actually has less impact on the site because of its more compact design than the sprawling "California campus" it replaced. The new school has two academic wings, separated by a central courtyard with a pedestrian bridge connecting the wings. The classroom wings are designed to CAPACITY138,396COST PER SQ FT$312.00CITATIONMiddle School CitationFEATURED IN2010 Architectural Portfolio flexible and accommodate a variety of educational models.
Auxiliary rooms within the academic zone enable small-group instruction and breakout spaces for student leadership development related to the various academic programs. Folding partitions at four locations are dispersed evenly for teaching flexibility.
Sustainable features make the building a teaching tool for math and science curricula. The footprint of the school was reduced; water conservation, including rainwater harvesting, rain gardens and a green roof, led the environmental charge; and daylighting, natural ventilation and recycled materials are used throughout.
The building encourages everyone to "go green"—from high-efficiency lighting and daylight-control systems to signage at the parent dropoff encouraging drivers to turn off their engines while they wait.