The Poway Unified School District community sought to change the way schooling is done with the new Design 39 Campus. During a week-long programming and design symposium, more than 100 parents, teachers, administrators, business partners, and community leaders collaborated with designers to develop the curriculum and vision for the campus, which has become the new model school for the district.
The campus prioritizes self-autonomy to prepare students to be independent and responsible for their learning journey and connects learners to the community through business and industry partnerships.
The resulting design encompasses a variety of learning spaces, such as learning pods with non-traditional grade spans, collaboration areas, maker spaces, and imagination studios that elevate learning.
A space that once functioned as a second story library at Santa Ana High School has transformed to the Edward James Olmos School for Film and Cinematic Arts, a specialized program for film and cinematic exploration. To expand its already robust portfolio of arts programs, this space provides industry professionals with access to students studying screenwriting, editing, broadcasting and special effects.
Books, stacks, technology resources, and study areas are replaced with a large studio outfitted for filming and instruction, two editing rooms, a digital broadcast suite with control room and studio, a digital media lab, and a flex lab.
The addition of windows where none previously existed offer incredible views that overlook the main campus plaza, activating the exiting architecture and visually connecting the campus to the transformed space.
Del Lago Academy of Applied Sciences, a specialty high school in San Diego, is situated on previously undeveloped land. The varied topography of the 34-acre parcel presented physical and spatial challenges to the campus development and expounded upon the firm's growing expertise with Building Information Modeling and design.
Rocky outcroppings featured throughout the property contain evidence of past occupation by Indigenous peoples. To respect this legacy, grinding mortars honed into the living rock and petroglyphs were preserved. The result is campus that provides unique educational opportunities for our future leaders and scholars while maintaining a crucial link to the history of the area and local cultures.
Digital technologies used for developing the landform modifications and building-site integration allowed for precise grading strategies requiring no special protections through the construction process.
Del Mar Heights Elementary School is scenic and expressive, capitalizing on expansive ocean views and the surrounding Torrey Pines Environmental Preserve. The high-performance campus design harnesses aspects of the coastal climate to maximize energy efficiency and occupant comfort through careful material selection, building orientation, natural light, operable glass walls to capture prevailing breezes, passive heating and cooling, and thermal massing. Learning environments maintain healthy air quality levels through natural ventilation and provide visual connections to the coastline and nature preserve.
The site is terraced along its natural topography, allowing for a continuous transition to the ocean.
Simple shed-roofed, open structures are accessed along the campus boardwalk lined with beach sand and coastal grasses to mimic the water’s edge.