Apex High School, Replacement School
CLH provided landscape architecture, civil engineering, and construction administration services for the Apex High School project. This project includes the replacement of the current high school building in addition to site improvements around the campus. The proposed building stands 74 feet tall at its highest point. Some of the other proposed buildings on site are a new press box, greenhouse, visitor concessions and restrooms and a two-level parking deck. Students assigned to Apex High School have been moved to newly built Green Level High School before returning to Apex High in August 2019.
This central courtyard presented the challenge of designing a multi-functional space with distinct areas that also felt cohesive. CLH worked closely with lead architect Clark Nexsen to design spaces for both passive and active learning. These spaces include: central lawn areas with tree shade for casual recreation, a patio with larger tables for art projects, a space for outdoor dining, and a lawn area in the sunniest spot that will be converted into a garden. In addition to daytime functionality, the space is also used as spill-over from sporting or performance events. The courtyard also accommodates circulation from one side to the other with a variety of paths. A cobblestone path runs like a riverbed through the courtyard from north to south, linking all of the spaces together. Scored concrete indicates main circulation paths, while linear pavers are located underneath the main seating areas. In addition to a variety of spaces is a variety of seating. There are both fixed and unfixed seating options, creating opportunities for the students to create their own spaces.
John J. Blair Elementary School Replacement School
CLH provided landscape architecture and civil engineering services for the John J. Blair Elementary School project. This 13.79 acre project included the replacement of the existing school. The site design includes a colorful coastal-themed outdoor paved play area in the shape of an octopus. CLH was challenged with addressing the vehicular circulation problems by providing enough on-site stacking for the carpool loop to avoid traffic backing out on Blair School Road. The new site design incorporated a constructed wetland to treat the stormwater runoff and provide an education opportunity for the students.
Green Elementary School, Replacement School
CLH provided landscape architecture and civil engineering services on the Green Elementary Replacement School project. The original building located near Millbrook and Six Forks Road was constructed in 1958. Over the years, various building additions were added to meet expansion needs; however, to meet current programming requirements, it was determined that a total replacement of the facilities would be the best approach. The clean slate allowed the placement and shape of the building to respond to the existing topography of the site and utilize the site to its potential. The large topographic changes were used to create separation between uses such as staff parking areas, play spaces, stormwater detention, and the car pool drive loop.
Because of the existing history of the school, many features of the former site were designed into the new site to preserve the identity of Green Elementary. For example, because a Magnolia tree previously located in the bus loop could not be saved, it was repurposed into a story teller chair area located outside the media center. Also, a rock outcropping which was a former destination along a nature trail in the wooded area of campus was relocated and is now featured in the carpool loop. Bricks from the original school building are used in the “Leadership Plaza” Space outside of the Administration area where the student Leadership committee will meet.
Green Elementary is a shining example of a site design which blends history, nature, and user needs to create a space that is unique and meaningful to the students, teachers, parents, and staff.
Alamance Elementary School, Addition/Renovations
The existing Alamance Elementary School is located at the corner of Southeast School Road and Williams Dairy Road in Guilford County, NC. The elementary school is made up of several standalone buildings. Most of the existing elementary school buildings were demolished with the exception of the one story classroom/administration and cafeteria building that is located the farthest west of all the buildings. This building will be renovated and a large classroom addition will be constructed to attach to this building. Site work for this project consisted of the demolition of three elementary school buildings and grading for the construction of a new addition. New access drives, parking lots, multipurpose playfields, play areas, off site road improvements, utility services and a constructed wet pond to control stormwater runoff were major parts of this project.
Apex Friendship Middle School, New Construction
As site designer for Wake County Public School System Apex Friendship Middle School, CLH had the opportunity to design a variety of whimsical and creative outdoor spaces. The main courtyard features a sinuous main path that ties the space together. The design features a dining area, an outdoor classroom/seating area with curvilinear benches that echo the main path, an herb gardening space, and informal boulder seating for smaller groups. The material changes throughout the courtyard (i.e., paver, concrete, and gravel) allow the ground plane to signify the different use areas. Shades trees are provided to the southwest of the main seating areas for outdoor comfort during the warmer months. The art patio, located on the north side of the building, is shaped like a painter’s palette. The arrangement of the multi-colored mounds and central bench provides an outdoor classroom space that incites imagination and creativity.
Carrboro High School, New Construction – LEED Silver Certified
This project is a 56-acre, compact, multi-story high school designed to meet LEED certification through the US Green Building Council. It incorporates innovative stormwater design, walkability and multi-modal transportation. The site includes baseball and softball fields, a track, and access to bike lanes on connecting roadways.
Detailed site studies were provided to assist the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools System in identifying a new high school site. The studies included code investigation, conceptual layouts and cost estimates to help the school system determine feasible locations for the school. Additionally, the studies included conducting public presentations to community groups.