Pflugerville ISD—Weiss High School
The vision began with a need for a fast-growing school district – the school would be the districts 4th high school. Architects were challenged to design a new school to accommodate 2,500 students on a 150-acre site master planned for a future junior high and elementary school expansion. The school CTE components including biomedical, business and tech labs. The school is laid out to accommodate a future ROTC and auto-tech lab. Also included, fine arts wing with auditorium and black box theater.
The building is organized along a central spine “Main Street” that ties different program blocks together. The school’s interiors showcase a balance of contemporary forms & glass with the warmth of wood beam accents. Stone & masonry is integrated into main interior spaces, bringing together the exterior & interior architecture. The main entry to the school is distinguished by a defined building form flanked by 2 classroom pods giving the entry to the school a welcoming feeling to the community.
The campus prioritizes transparency & safety. A secure vestibule is designed to deter potential threats from entering school. The all-masonry exterior shell with metal panels & stone accents is durable, budget friendly & low maintenance. The school was constructed in budget. The 150-acre site is master planned for a future junior high & elementary school expansion. Native materials, proper exposure, natural daylight, and LED lighting throughout contribute to a reduced operating cost.
Clerestory windows & 100% LED lights throughout save on energy loads & native, durable materials such as brick, stone, ceramic tile & stained concrete reduce life cycle & maintenance. Low E glazing, operable shading devices as well as large roof overhangs decrease the heat load & HVAC demand. Underground Geothermal wells around the site paired with an efficient energy management system reduce energy use. The campus landscape features native & drought tolerant plants that are low maintenance.
The campus design blends seamlessly into the context of its surrounding community. Shared parking, fields and sidewalks all play a community role within the neighborhood. Shared community spaces including a large cafeteria, library, a performing arts center and gyms can be used for community events, performances, and school activities and are located conveniently adjacent to parking areas and can be isolated by overhead grills.
The team met with the district & other stakeholders during the design process to refine the design of the school. Ideas & goals were collected and renderings & concepts created to visualize the vision of the community. Careful planning of the site created a master plan that would fulfill the districts needs for a new middle school and elementary school. The project includes a master plan for a future elementary school, middle school and transpiration center on the balance of the site.
The well-defined Main Street corridor allows for an efficient circulation and visual security for the school. The heart of the school is the media center that encourages peer to peer interaction
Star of Distinction Category Winner