Princeton ISD—Princeton High School
Architect: Claycomb Associates, Architects
This 254,364 square foot addition and renovation relieves overcrowding, expands core facilities, rebrands this campus for the next generation of graduates, and ensures the long-term functionality of the district’s flagship high school.
The original design was not intended for expansion, creating a unique challenge. To increase classroom space, a new wing was added between two existing ones, creating an academic loop around an outdoor learning space. The media center, athletics, and fine arts areas were all redesigned to encourage community use and to accommodate current and future growth. A new commons area links the new and existing, houses a new food court, and provides a variety of cafeteria seating options.
With a final cost of $91.20 a square foot, the District achieved incredible value on this project. In addition to doubling campus capacity to 1600 students, adjacency to the stadium and a new CATE building were maintained. Repurposing the old media center into a new counseling suite and converting the old Fine Arts suite into a technical theater shop were creative ways to expand student services and achieve new program space.
Introducing daylighting throughout the additions was a top priority. All academic areas were given windows to help promote academic performance. The media center windows all faced north east to collect soft daylighting while minimizing heat gain. All new and existing lights were converted to high efficiency LED to optimize energy usage and improve indoor lighting levels. Low-maintenance, durable ceramic tile flooring was used helping reduce the number of chemical cleaners needed.
This once rural district is now a fast growth community. Design goals were to keep up with this growth by increasing student opportunities for college and career readiness while maintaining hometown identity. The facility had to blend seamlessly while establishing a new interior color palate to reflect the district brand. New academic programs, larger athletics facilities, and a bigger fine arts presence help give the students more opportunities and increase community involvement.
Planning for this campus had to be efficient, effective, and expandable. Guided by the work of the long-range planning efforts, the designers met with administrators on how to implement new program space, enhance existing space, stay within budget constraints and facilitate new teaching methodologies. Learning from other fast growth districts and folding in the essence of this community became the driving force in design.
The media center is located within the heart of the academic loop, providing a natural congregating space, fostering peer to peer social connections. The new food court commons feature a mixture of seating and counters with USB and power for a more independent and preference-based dining and study atmosphere. To better serve students’ social and emotional needs, a new and inviting counseling suite with a lounge area, career center and increased counseling spaces were developed.
Star of Distinction Category Winner