2017—Shadow Creek High School

Alvin ISD—Shadow Creek High School
Architect: Stantec

New 3-story, 558,108-sq. ft. high school serving 2,500 students, grades 9- 12. Includes auditorium, natatorium, football, soccer, baseball, and softball fields. Also includes a district maintenance building.


Design—Star of Distinction

Clear design objectives and strategies for future learning were formulated to drive the design and implementation of the new high school. The design features a three-story, open, and transparent floor plan centered around five learning hubs stacked along the central axis. Tailored to meet the evolving needs of 21st century students, the learning environment removes physical barriers, incorporates collaboration space, and has an abundance of technology.


Value—Star of DistinctionWith flexibility in mind to support ever-changing learning models, the efficient floor plan maximizes space throughout the entire building and extends learning beyond the classrooms. From shared educator work space to flexible furniture to rolling doors, spaces can be tailored to accommodate user needs and adapt to different learning group sizes. Additionally, durable and low maintenance materials were used for enhanced value. All resulting in a low cost-per-square foot.


With a district focus on energy management and conservation, the high school features tubular daylight devices for enhanced daylighting, LED lighting throughout the campus, exterior window shading devices to reduce heat load and glare, dimmed lighting, and HVLS (high velocity low speed) large fans to help circulate air in the commons. The stacked floor plan enabled a smaller building footprint, thereby reducing energy costs year after year.


Community is at the heart of the campus. Glass exterior and natural light create a connection to nature and surrounding community while supporting physical and emotional security. Visual transparency and bold graphics inspire a sense of pride and self- confidence. Hubs act as smaller communities within the larger community, with ample space for gathering to create a sense of belonging. The ability to connect with adjacent institutional entities further enhances connection to the local community.


Planning—Star of Distinction67 committee members contributed through 28 meetings to create a foundation outlining how they envisioned students and educators using the school. Student goals centered on a learning environment that groups students in nontraditional teams, promotes collaboration and hands-on learning, and explores various learning styles. Educator goals focused on giving teachers the opportunity to recognize diversity in learning styles, and options to tailor teaching methods to individual topics and learners.

School Transformation

Transformation—Star of DistinctionBy breaking down the learning environment into smaller hubs, the school fosters culture and community while supporting collaboration and various learning initiatives. 2,500 students are divided into 5 learning hubs. Each hub has 240 students, 10 educators, and various spaces for both individual and group learning. Spaces include traditional classrooms, large group settings, learning studios for individual learning through technology, seminar rooms, small group project rooms, and wet/dry labs.

Stars of Distinction Star of Distinction Category Winner