Marion Junior High School, situated in Marion, Ark., was completed in fall 2009 and was the first zero-energy school building in Arkansas.
The 197,000-square-foot building was designed for 850 students and includes a 2,500-seat arena and physical-education facility. The school used geothermal HVAC, natural light and cutting-edge technology to provide CAPACITY850COST PER SQ FT$147.00FEATURED IN2013 Architectural Portfolio comfortable, energy-efficient environment. The design inspires students and staff by promoting creative and innovative thinking.
The project design stemmed from the idea of supervision and organization. The classrooms are on the west side of the building and are arranged in a “spoke-like” formation. Each of the four separate areas (math, English, history and science) has a designated “spoke” and color scheme. The extracurricular activity areas (arena, music department and cafeteria) are on the east side of the building. In the center of the building lies the office area for complete supervision over both wings and the entrance. This separation between classroom and extracurricular activity spaces isolates the noisiest parts of the building from the areas of learning.