Erie High School

Erie, Colorado

  • FIRM

    H+L Architecture


    St. Vrain Valley School District

  • AREA

    160,000 sq.ft.





Steeped in its historical context, the school represents a modern vision of more than a century and a half of coal mining history. Contemporary abstractions of mining forms and images are articulated to capture the charm and flavor of this historical mining village.

Academically, the high school was planned around the educational philosophy of ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY1,200COST PER SQ FT$180.00FEATURED IN2005 Architectural Portfolio school-within-a-school concept. Four classroom neighborhoods and a science/technology neighborhood are situated centrally for easy access to the media center, administration, performing-arts, athletics and student commons areas.

In addition to meeting the educational program and specifications, Erie High School also was designed to facilitate full community use after school hours.

The entire building is a perfect example of how daylight and materials affect the inhabitants of a facility. Every learning environment within the school is naturally lighted, which will lead to greater student focus and attention, attendance, physical and mental well-being, and academic achievement. The extensive use of wood brings warmth and a human scale for the students, and reflects the local mining history and culture of the region.

Community involvement and collaboration was at the heart of the design effort, and Erie High School is a testament of local pride, ownership and social responsibility.