Head of the Class

Camino Nuevo High School, Los Angeles, California by Daly Genik (Photo: Tim Griffith)

Indian Community School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin by Antoine Predock Architect, PC (Photo: Timothy Hursley)

The AIA just announced the projects that received the highest marks in this year’s Educational Facility Design Awards, and they’re a diverse class – the 13 winners run the gamut from urban to rural, elementary to university, built to unbuilt.

Deemed “excellent” by the jury, Antoine Predock Architect’s Indian Community School follows a long ridge on a former farm outside Milwaukee, sidestepping historic trees and sporting a roof of overlapping angled planes that blends into the site’s topography.  Bohlin Cywinski Jackson’s Visitor Center for the Parks Service in Pennsylvania borrows from its setting to make a plea for environmental consciousness instead:  its shingles were cut on-site from old tires found in the streams and woods nearby.

The urban designs may be more constrained by their settings, but they acquit themselves admirably.  In Chicago, OWP|P converted Ralph Ellison elementary school into a high school, renovating the original 1926 limestone building and grafting on a modern glass box with a mosaic of glazed windows.  Another striking visual comes from Daly Genik Architects:  On a long, skinny site sandwiched between two highways in Los Angeles, their industrial-chic Camino Nuevo High School has corrugated metal sides that muffle street sounds while cooling the building at the same time: stylish and smart.

Camino Nuevo High School, Los Angeles, California by Daly Genik (Photo: Tim Griffith)

Camino Nuevo High School, Los Angeles, California by Daly Genik (Photo: Tim Griffith)

Full list of winners:
Indian Community School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Antoine Predock Architect, PC)
Yale University Sculpture Building and Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut (Kieran Timberlake)
Environmental Education/Visitor Activity Center, National Park Service, Pennsylvania (Bohlin Cywinski Jackson)

Francis Parker School, San Diego, California (Lake|Flato Architects)
ASU Polytechnic Academic Complex, Mesa, Arizona (RSP Architects, Ltd. in association with Lake|Flato Architects)
Camino Nuevo High School, Los Angeles, California (Daly Genik)
Canada’s National Ballet School, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects)

Cornell University West Campus Residence Initiative, Ithaca, New York (Kieran Timberlake)
Staples Elementary School, Easton, Connecticut (The S|L|A|M Collaborative)
Ralph Ellison Campus, Chicago, Illinois (OWP|P)
Avon Old Farms Beaston Performing Arts Center, Avon, Connecticut (The S|L|A|M Collaborative)
Modular Zero Energy Classroom, Hawaii (Anderson Anderson Architecture)
Green Dot Animo Leadership High School, Lennox, California (Pugh + Scarpa Architects, Inc.)

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