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GHS TRANSFORMATION PRAISED BY THIRD NATIONAL MAGAZINE
January 24, 2017
The transformation of Granbury High School was featured in the Fall 2016 issue of Learning by Design magazine. GHS was selected for recognition by the magazine for Outstanding Project, which was led by the Huckabee school architectural firm.
Construction at the high school began in November 2014 with principal work completed last fall. The Buford Thompson Company is the construction manager at-risk for all GISD bond projects and is working alongside Huckabee.
“The reconstruction of Granbury High School transformed a 40-year-old school into a state-of-the-art educational facility, improving technology access, creating equity, increasing security and providing choice-driven academic and social environments for students and educators,” the article reads. “The design team partnered with the faculty, students, parents, and the community to create a plan to re-think the district’s approach to educational delivery. The team explored emerging pedagogies and technologies and how to building design and furniture selection would support new ideals.”
The renovations and additions to the high school campus were part of the $84.9 million bond program approved by Granbury ISD voters in November 2013. Additions were for career and technical education, fine arts, ninth grade academic classrooms, and office area with a secure entry. The plan also included building a robust technology infrastructure for model classrooms throughout the school district.
The design features a collegiate look with Granbury stone used prominently to provide a consistent look throughout the exterior of the building with entry points clearly distinguished for parents and visitors. Inside, a commons area is the focal point of the interior with the cafeteria, library, and coffee bar similar to a university student center.
The article says the “project refined the overall design, relocated the ninth-grade campus into the facility, expanded program space for career and technology activities and for fine arts, and created a student union and media center that mimicked collegiate environments.”
Academic departments are grouped, with teachers having common office areas to meet individually with students, for tutoring, and for collaboration with their colleagues. Hallways are streamlined to provide efficient corridors for student movement and supervision. In addition, CTE programs are centralized in the back of the building with a separate secure entry as well as classrooms and labs designed specifically for those specialized programs.
“Collaboration was promoted through the use of breakout spaces, educator workrooms for teaming and cross-curricular planning, a learning stair and a coffee bar with varied seating option in the student union,” the article continued.
The front of the building features a new wayfinding trellis and courtyard area with a parent drop-off and pick-up lane that aligns with Pirate Drive. In addition, the school has new parking lots as well as a new area for the bus transportation hub and marching band practice grid.
“The solution creates a uniform aesthetic for a previously disjointed building,” the article concludes. “New facades and treatments to existing facades modernize the facility and mimic the style of a collegiate campus.”
GHS was previously highlighted in the August 2015 issue of District Administration magazine, which focused on new and improved school facilities with the high school spotlighted on the cover and feature article. The Granbury project was also featured for outstanding design in the November 2016 issue of American School & University magazine.
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