John Marshall High School
Building on a legacy of innovative secondary education delivery and incredible community and alumni pride, the John Marshall High School Additions and Renovations Project represents a transformational architectural design solution supporting a more relevant pedagogy to propel a school and its students into the modern era of learning.
The multi-phase “re-imagining” of the campus includes all of the original facility’s 238,000 square feet and features sweeping changes to address identity and safety as well as teaching and learning spaces in both academic and social constructs. Additions to the buildings include a new 3-story main entrance with relocated administrative offices providing visual and physical control for students and visitors, a new secondary entrance to serve the performing arts and athletics building, and a new 2-story circulation element bringing together the disconnected educational spaces. Extensive interior renovations of the main academic building allow for a larger, singular cafeteria/social commons and a modern food court serving space adjacent to a new research and media center to become the nucleus of the primary building level, surrounded by fully renovated and departmentally reorganized classrooms. The upper floor’s transformations include the reconstruction of new STEM lecture and laboratory spaces at the center core and supported by a perimeter of more traditional teaching spaces. A strong vocational and technology curriculum tailored to the region’s workforce informs the renovations of the building’s lower level.
The design concept is inspired by a strong sense of pride and preparedness at JMHS. Students today think, work, and interact differently, and their learning spaces should accommodate current generational needs, fostering creativity, collaboration, and interaction. This conceptual thinking provides design direction to the development of the “connector,” replacing a deteriorated exterior pedestrian bridge between the buildings. The new interior space does more than simply provide safe circulation; it also becomes a light-filled gathering space for individual and small-group study or project-based learning. A mix of high-top tables and soft seating encourages all types of planned and spontaneous collaborations between students and faculty.
A sophisticated interior material and color palette throughout the entire campus begin to blur the lines between high school, college, and workplace environments. The permanence of the materials and the rhythm of the vertical exterior elements expressing the existing building structure inform the design of the new exterior additions. Interpreting the language of the existing campus and executing it in a new way blends the overall composition for a cohesive appearance, while allowing the additions to mark their place in the timeline of John Marshall High School’s evolution.
Marshall County Schools