Glacier High School

Kalispell, Montana

  • FIRM

    CTA Architects Engineers


    Kalispell School District 5

  • AREA

    242,665 sq.ft.





Glacier High’s warm and inviting appearance truly captures student and community imagination with its unique and reflective mountain valley image. Oriented to face the snow-capped peaks of Glacier National Park, the design emulates the regional mountainous materials and forms. The building position brings daylighting into classrooms and captures impressive panoramic ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMDeJongLockerCAPACITY1,380COST PER SQ FT$129.61FEATURED IN2008 Architectural Portfolio of the surrounding mountain ranges and Glacier peaks. The design also uses energy-saving strategies, such as biomass heating and free cooling, to lower operational costs. Dynamic spaces, good indoor air quality, plenty of daylight and sophisticated color palettes make the facility a truly remarkable warm and healthful learning environment.

The large centralized Glacier Center is the most dynamic social space in the facility. This two-story area with high vaulted ceilings, warm heavy-timber wood trusses and stone colonnades is used for many activities. All student services lead to and from this hub. Students enjoy lunch at the food court, and this flexible commons area also serves as the primary lobby and concessions space for all public events in the gymnasium, performance hall and Wolfpack Theatre. School dances, pep rallies, assemblies, public meetings, speakers and diplomats all have used this warm and inviting town-square forum. Glacier High’s inviting, yet controlled entrances engage the surrounding neighborhood with activities throughout the day and evening, fostering partnerships with the community college, private businesses and city organizations.

Because Glacier High School is divided into smaller learning communities, students are engaged actively in their education, apply what they learn more comfortably, and receive more personalized attention from their peers, mentors and teachers. Each small community is composed of multi-sized collaborative learning areas, small locker pods, and teacher planning and resource spaces.

One learning community is Team Avalanche, Glacier High’s Freshman Academy, providing a nurturing environment that caters to the educational, emotional and social needs of freshmen.