2010 Exhibition of School Planning and Architecture. Rogers High School. Spokane, Washington The Lee Brockway Award for Renovations High School NAC|Architecture. Rogers High School. Rogers High School. Commons. Community Environment:
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The Lee Brockway Award for Renovations
John R. Rogers High School, originally built in 1932, was renovated and restored with a new addition designed to complement the classic art-deco design. The project provides a renewed, state-of-the-art high school and a refreshed, revitalized community icon in a working-class neighborhood with a proud history. The Rogers High School neighborhood is predominantly single-family residential with one arterial, Wellesley Avenue, bordering the north side of the site. Houses in the neighborhood are smaller 1930-1940-era homes.
A voter-approved school facility improvement bond provided the funding for this project, located in a historical working-class area of Spokane. It was the goal of the architectural team to create a place that reflected the educational values and community pride of the surrounding neighborhoods. The finished building is one where teachers are happy, the students are excited, and the community is proud.
New construction and renovation include demolition and replacement of buildings that no longer served the modern educational process and needs. Renovated and new academic classrooms, replacement of career and technical education spaces, and replacement of the cafeteria with a new student commons all take into account the technological and social needs of the student. Increased gymnasium size with improved locker rooms, new safety and security systems, and community-use spaces ensure that the school’s use reaches beyond the academic and into the community.
To maximize the number of teaching spaces with views, strategies such as incorporating overhead sectional doors with vision glazing into vocational labs were employed. The building is designed to meet the Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol.
The school was designed to provide either a departmental or a small-schools-within-a-school teaching model through careful planning of flexible teaching space locations.
Originally built in 1932, John R. Rogers High School was preserved and restored to complement the classic art-deco design. Drawing on experience from previous historical local high school renovations, specific attention was paid to create spaces that would both blend into the existing structure and stand apart as modern updates all while holding to the rigorous criteria of the National Register of Historic Places. The building totals 260,000 square feet, an increase of 90,000 square feet.
A new clock tower located near the student entrance to the commons becomes a beacon, clearly signaling to all that the main school entrance is now on the east side of the campus. This tower has become Rogers’ signature element – an architectural identity icon.
Community and alumni input was critical to the success of the project. Community members were involved in the design process from the beginning of schematic design.
The GC/CM process embraced by the school district allowed the general contractor to provide their expertise on various design options beginning with schematic design and continuing with their input on a range of issues such as constructability options during construction documents.
Careful consideration was paid to phasing of the construction to allow seamless delivery of teaching with no interruption and minimal inconvenience. This was critical since the school was continually occupied during construction.