Monthly Archives

October 2016

New Godley High School

By | Client News

Adaptability is a key theme in the design of Godley ISD’s new high school. Inspired by a college campus, the central feature of the facility is a grand Center for Learning & Innovation (CLI) that blends learning, social and civic use into an open-concept, adaptable space. The CLI features a café, library, collaboration rooms with movable walls, a film room, learning stair and access to the outdoors. It creates a mash-up of spaces that can be utilized in infinitely possible ways to customize the learning experience.

The new high school is designed to provide a variety of spaces for students to learn, with the goal of utilizing each space to its fullest potential and maximizing the educational benefit for our students. When students walk in on day one, they’ll experience a space unlike anything they’ve seen. It will set the stage for the type of collaborative learning you see on college campuses and in the workforce.

Dr. Rich DearSuperintendent, Godley ISD

The school will be designed in phases, with Phase 1 focused on core components and academics. The CLI is the epicenter of the school, which also includes a 3-story academic wing and athletic support spaces. Next to the CLI, an outdoor courtyard features benches and a projection screen, reinforcing concepts of community and social learning. On the north side, a second story deck overlooks the football stadium—a design choice inspired by collegiate stadiums. It too is adaptable, and GISD can purpose it for learning, social, athletic and public use.

The new school adjoins the current facility, which will be repurposed into a middle school. The close proximity of the high school and middle school campuses will increase schedule flexibility and academic opportunities. The schools will create a shared campus connected with pedestrian walkways. Phase 2 of the high school includes the addition of fine arts, CTE, a competition gymnasium, a performing arts center and expansion of athletics.

Godley High School will support 700 students in grades 9-12. Planning an innovative design within the budget of $28 million required thoughtful use of space, as well as careful consideration of how to phase the project to take advantage of available facilities and amenities. It also required a team approach, tested when the district and Huckabee were faced with an unanticipated budget challenge: following a successful bond program, preliminary projections for tax revenue were lower than anticipated—a result of a decline in natural gas mineral property taxes (a large percent of the tax base is rooted in the natural gas mineral industry).

The team immediately worked with the construction manager to create a priority list and alternates that would frame the budget, successfully bringing an incredible facility within the new cost parameters. They focused on creating spaces that had multi-purpose uses, such as a CLI, outdoor learning courtyard and presentation rooms purposed for academic, athletic and community needs. The connection between the stadium and learning space also supported multi-functional use. This focus on adaptability minimized inefficiencies in the program and maximized budget.

When the anticipated budget for the new campus declined, it took a team effort to bring costs back into alignment with the district’s educational goals. That’s Huckabee’s strength, working with clients and partners to collaboratively develop solutions that meet educational needs, budget goals and ultimately benefit students, the community and taxpayers.

Josh BrownHuckabee

At 120,000 sf, the new Godley High School is an innovative and engaging space that will support district growth—in enrollment and educational delivery—for decades to come. It’s a project that will change the community and support its development into a destination district while also providing interactive, real-world experiences for students. The campus is set to open in 2018.

A Bright Future: West Rises Up

By | Client News

“What I’ve learned is we could teach inside a cardboard box…learning can take place anywhere. And what I’ve learned about our kids is they’ll respond if we’re truly doing our best to engage them,” said David Truitt, West ISD Superintendent in the new documentary, A Bright Future: West Rises Up.

The documentary follows the story of five students, following the 2013 explosion that devastated West ISD’s school buildings and much of the town. Through their eyes, it tells the story of the community’s resilience in the aftermath of the disaster, leading up to the opening of the new schools this past August.

We’ve got a lot of people in our district and our town who didn’t let tragedy keep them from succeeding. We’re excited for this film to tell their story in such a memorable way.

David TruittSuperintendent, West ISD

You’ll see captivating images showing the damage to the old schools and the beauty of the new educational spaces, but this isn’t actually a story about buildings. It’s a story about resourceful, resilient people.

Rush OlsonDirector, A Bright Future: West Rises Up

The film will make its broadcast debut on KWKT FOX 44 (Waco-Bryan-College Station) on Thursday, October 20 at 9:30 PM, with hour two running the following evening at the same time. The station will run both hours back-to-back on October 21 from 4-6 PM; sister station KYLE Y28 will air the film on October 22 from 7-9 PM. The documentary will be shown in the Dallas-Fort Worth area on November 26 at 11 AM and November 27 at 7 AM. Additional airings will be announced.

Rush Olson, of FourNine Productions and Rush Olson Creative & Sports, and director of photography/editor Dave French of Ludisian Legion Entertainment have gathered interviews and footage for more than three years. Their finished film includes stories of getting children back to school 100 hours after the explosion, years spent on a campus consisting entirely of portable buildings and some remarkable athletic and academic achievements. Being, at its heart, a story about learners, the filmmakers felt the choice of narrators should reflect its essence.

The students’ voiceovers will accompany interviews with numerous others connected to the story. Follow the story of West ISD at www.restorewestisd.com or www.facebook.com/restorewestisd.