Client: Virginia Beach City Public Schools
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
This 223,260 SF, 1,200-student school houses grades six through eight and is expected to achieve a LEED for Schools Gold rating. The three-story facility was uniquely designed to best address students’ needs. The learning environment combines many sustainable materials with an assortment of color palettes. The use of natural woods, solid surface materials and terrazzo occur in the Auditeria, while terrazzo, translucent railings, fabrics, painted CMU and specialized materials for elective subject entrances/doors were utilized in the two-story mall area. The design has also set-aside an opportunity for the architect, students and staff to design specialized learning and display spaces in each floor of the three-story academic wing. Active and passive teaching tools, such as system monitoring software and displays rainwater catchment and biogardens for science projects, have been incorporated into the school’s design. Technology systems include building control and data systems, video-voice-data IP systems, security, message boards, ceiling projectors, Smartboards and touch screen monitors. The building contains high-efficiency mechanical systems, solar water preheat to boilers, daylighting, and acoustical controls within and between learning spaces.
Sustainable design practices are visible throughout this LEED Gold design. Some of these features include renewable/recycled materials, durable materials, local materials, rainwater harvesting for water closet flushing and irrigation, solar water systems, reflective roof systems , syphonic roof drainage, biogardens, permeable pavements, heat island reducing pavements, high-efficiency mechanical systems, daylighting, occupancy sensors for lighting, LED exterior lighting and shielded exterior lights to reduce light pollution. Many of these features are integrated into a school-wide software data system to be utilized as a tool for learning and to measure current and future performance of the building
The elements placed into the school reflect a long-term commitment of Virginia Beach City Public Schools to provide their community with a facility that is forward looking, identifiable as a focal point of education and community use, and a facility that projects a regional direction in both the physical environment and the sustainable features it incorporates.