Renaissance High School* + Idaho State University Health Sciences*

WEST ADA SCHOOL DISTRICT

1307 E. CENTRAL DR.

MERIDIAN, IDAHO

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IDAHO STATE UNIVERSITY

1311 E. CENTRAL DR.

MERIDIAN, IDAHO

PROBLEM:

A new plant employing hundreds was shuttered in 2003.  Lost for a similar production process, the site sat empty for three years.

SOLUTION:

The state’s largest school district had a number of unmet facility needs along with a burgeoning enrollment.  Consolidating administrative services into a central location could significantly reduce operational costs.  However, the district’s superintendent had a grander idea of what to do with the “BOX.”  With five other high schools serving the majority of students through customary means, she proposed a teaching and learning center that would bring together outlying programs and an international baccalaureate high school to serve both nontraditional and exceptional students in a mutually beneficial way.  Rounding out the vision, Idaho State University partnered in the redevelopment endeavor creating an educational continuum for high school students, the opportunity for faculty enrichment through collaboration, along with the advantage of sharing classrooms, labs and common space.

The Adaptive Re-Use of Jabil Circuit has been conceived.

DESIGN:

The intended consequence is an adaptive reuse completely divergent from the building’s beginning.  In a mall like setting, students are enriched and prepared for the future.  High school programs include culinary arts, building technologies, international studies, and dual credit coursework. Jointly shared space with the University, who has the state’s medical arts and science mission, include labs, multimedia classrooms, seminar rooms, media center, cafeteria and student commons.   The University serves the public through clinics such as dental residency, counseling, and audiology.  A simulation lab prepares students for careers as nurses and physician assistants.

With such a massive footprint, the majority of rooms could not have access to exterior walls.  In addition, way finding was a concern.  A series of linear, clear glass skylights were planned over major circulation ways.  Shafts deliver natural light to common areas such as the media center and cafeteria.  High clerestory windows borrow light into classrooms and laboratories.  The resulting effect is an environment that is scalable, healthy and conducive to learning.

The complex is filled with unique features. Existing roof bar joists were left intact, the steel deck was cut away for skylights, ductwork was left exposed to view, acoustics were handled with suspended clouds and light fixtures were carefully selected creating a decidedly vibrant industrial feel. Stairways and balconies open onto streetscapes.

By giving the plant a new life as an educational center, the building is fundamentally sustainable.  Additional considerations include daylight harvesting, and high efficiency HVAC and lighting systems.

The facility embodies the thoughtful use of patron’s funds.  The shell, structure, roof and a large portion of the building systems were reused at a cost far below that of new construction.  By adding a second floor within the high bay portion of the plant, the value was enhanced.  The complex provides 455,000 square feet of educational space.

Renaissance High School + ISU Health Sciences was recognized by the American Institute of Architects Idaho Chapter in 2012 by receiving an Award of Honor in Architecture.

*In-Association with Hummel

Gregory A. Ugrin  AIA NCARB

Design Architect ( Hummel 1994 – 2014)