Georgetown Elementary School

Hudsonville, Michigan

Part of a master-planned site that already includes a middle school and high school athletic stadium, Georgetown Elementary is a balance of tradition and innovation. Primary goals included maintaining parity with the schools in the district; creating a child-friendly environment; incorporating natural lighting; maximizing energy efficiency; and establishing ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY467COST PER SQ FT$116.00FEATURED IN2007 Architectural Portfolio state-of-the-art facility with durable, time-tested materials.

The design grew out of the philosophy that learning environments are complex transactional systems composed of “activity settings.” To mediate agility, variable-sized spaces occur throughout, including dividing each wing by grade level and connecting each classroom with oversized doors, allowing for teaming to occur. Each classroom contains a room for smaller group activities. A central core acts as a place for extended social and learning interaction.

Composed of masonry and steel, the building envelope maintains the highest level of thermal protection while being heated and cooled with a geothermal heat-pump system, projected to save the district 30 percent in energy savings. Environmentally friendly features include a white roof, reduction of air contaminants, radiant-cooling ceiling panels and an outdoor wetland learning area. Daylighting is incorporated into every area of the building, which features high clerestory windows with sloped ceilings to allow for deeper penetration of light.