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long shot aerial view design concept, campus grounds, mass-timber and brick façade, signage, four academies, large windows, green space, trees, people on paved pathways, parking lot, mountains in distance, blue skies, puffy white clouds
Grand Junction High School

A Hub for Activity and Arts in Western Colorado


Mesa County Valley School District 51

Project Location

Grand Junction, CO


1,600 students



Mesa County Valley School District 51 aspires to create innovative learning environments that inspire students, teachers, and staff while connecting to a proud community. Located on the same site as the original 1953 high school, the new Grand Junction High School replaces the outdated campus. Our design reinforces connections between students and faculty, empowers collaboration and diverse learning styles, and creates a hub of activity for this Colorado community on the western slope. A major focal point is the 1,500-seat auditorium, which is the largest performing arts venue between Denver and Salt Lake City.

Four pathway academies offer students robust opportunities for college credits and industry certifications through CTE programs and advanced placement programs with Colorado Mesa University. The pathways include: health sciences and human services; business and entrepreneurship; engineering, technology, and natural resources; and arts and humanities. Our design promotes a high degree of transparency, flexibility of spaces, and collaboration for all types of learners. It also encourages connectivity between student/student, student/faculty, and faculty/faculty to foster academic growth and a love for learning.

The exterior massing and vernacular reflect the unique location and heritage of the existing high school and community. Our design draws inspiration from three natural features of the valley: the Colorado National Monument, the Grand Mesa, and the Bookcliffs.

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