Cesar Chavez Elementary School

Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • FIRM



    Grand Rapids Public Schools

  • AREA

    63,000 sq.ft.





Grand Rapids Public Schools’ 50-year-old Hall Elementary needed to be replaced. It served a redeveloping urban, Hispanic neighborhood.

Community and staff members were very involved in this project. Three members of the design team speak both Spanish and English, and several bilingual community meetings were held with parents, neighbors and ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY525COST PER SQ FT$119.00FEATURED IN2010 Architectural Portfolio to determine how the new LEED silver Cesar Chavez Elementary would represent their special community. Early in the process, they established four design guides:

-Community. The community must be involved, and the facility must be an asset for the entire community. The sense of community should permeate the building.

-Texture. The materials and textures must reflect the simplicity and roughness of their Mexican heritage and the new emergence of this modern Hispanic neighborhood.

-Color. The colors must be bright, reflecting their Hispanic heritage.

-Climate. Hispanic architecture has features that are driven by the regional climate, such as shading and overhangs. The new building design must keep these features in mind, but translate them for the northern Michigan climate and innovations.