Glacier, the only middle school in White River School District, provides an important community resource and warrants an appropriate civic presence, while offering a welcoming and accessible destination.
With varying degrees of intervention, our intent is to coalesce the three existing volumes by way of simple yet decisive articulation of the forms and with a palette of materials which reflects the topography and natural surroundings of the school’s location at the foothills of Mount Rainier.
The Music/Art suite will receive an internal remodel. The Gymnasiums will be subject to substantial demo and remodel to modernize and reorganize the support accommodation to an age-appropriate facility. These structures will be ‘collected’ around a semitransparent screen with the effect of outwardly identifying this grouping as a single departmental entity and differentiating it from the adjacent volumes.
The new building extends to the east, contained within a simple form. This form is interrupted by subtle setbacks in the façade which begin to define and highlight various programmatic functions within the school such as PLC’s. Professional Learning Communities are at the core of the educational model at Glacier and on an organizational level involve locating similar subject-based classrooms in proximity to each other and to supporting resources.
Color is applied to the project in specific and intentional locations to further define the organizational approach to the building. Color identifies social spaces within the school and marks transitions between individual subject based areas.