Northwood High School

Irvine, California

  • FIRM



    Irvine Unified School District

  • AREA

    200,000 sq.ft.





Northwood High School is organized into three hierarchical components: houses, villages and institutes. Academic core houses are composed of interdisciplinary groupings of core academic classes—social studies, language arts, math and science—all linked to a common student work area. Groupings of grades 9 to 10 and grades 11 to 12 houses make up four villages. Students ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$191.00CITATIONHigh School CitationFEATURED IN2000 Architectural Portfolio encouraged to attend a particular village for all four years, creating a school-within-a-school model. The third hierarchical component is the institute, which offers students specific career, college-prep or academic focus in grades 11 to 12. The five institutes are bio-med/health, humanities, computer applications/business, engineering/electronics and fine/performing arts.

The heart of the campus at the intersection of the main axes is the academic court, which serves as a forum or civic center, a gathering space for speeches and school functions.

The campus is organized with the academic core north of the east-west axis and the buildings housing community and public functions grouped along the north-south axis. The Learning Resource Center divides the four villages equally and helps form the villages’ courtyards. The institutes surround the academic core to act as a transition between the academic and public environments.

"Well-developed concept of interdisciplinary houses and villages."—2000 Architectural Portfolio jury

Photographer: ©Ronald Moore & Associates