Comfrey Public School

Comfrey, Minnesota

On Sunday, March 29, 1998, a tornado devastated the small town of Comfrey, Minn. The community’s school, housing 185 K-12 students and many community functions, was severely damaged. A decision was made to rebuild, and thus began the painstaking project of demolishing, building a new replacement structure, repairing structural damage and remodeling.

The 1917 building ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY190COST PER SQ FT$120.00CITATIONBronze CitationFEATURED IN2001 Educational Interiors2001 Architectural PortfolioINTERIOR CATEGORYLaboratories kitchen were replaced by a single-story structure. The new cafeteria/commons area forms the heart of the school. Building circulation connections between new and existing buildings provide easy access to administration, stairs and the new elevator. The roof deck/roofing was repaired or replaced. The gymnasium/stage had been exposed to extreme weather conditions and required new wood flooring, bleachers and acoustical treatments.

The district built in flexibility at the elementary level to adjust for varying class sizes. Elementary classrooms were grouped into primary and intermediate groups of three classrooms each.

"This building is a symbol of community regrowth--design meets the needs of students. Well-done!"--2001 Educational Interiors Showcase jury