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The District’s premier comprehensive high school of 1,600 students had been in dire need of renovation and expansion for decades. Originally constructed during the Great Depression to educate 750 students, the program grew apace with the surrounding community, taxing available educational space. Awarded through a design competition process, the proposed modernization and expansion focused-on right-sizing academic space, expanding facilities to accommodate significant program growth, and re-visioning spaces to reflect and accommodate the diverse school community.
Through an efficient and organized design process, the project opened for its 2011-2012 academic year with only one year of off-site swing space necessary. The site, involving 300,000 SF of renovated existing space and 75,000 SF of new construction, was reorganized into three major venues, each independently operational for school and community use. The Academic Building features a dynamic 10,000 SF, 4-story, landscaped atrium with a dramatic skylight roof sheltering space for the school community to gather and engage. The Athletic Center strategically positions two new gyms with an exercise facility in the original Power Plant, next to the recently completed Aquatic Center and forming a new athletic recreation complex. The exciting new Visual and Performing Arts Center, entered through a new 2-story lobby, includes an 850-seat state-of-the-art auditorium with scene shop, black box theater, band and music rooms, 2D and 3D art studios, choral arts and dance studios, adjacent to a robotics lab, media center, cybercafé, media production, and computer labs.