Athens PreK-5 School
Currently under construction is a new PreK through 5th grade school for Athens City Schools in Athens, TN. The new school will consolidate 5 primary and intermediate schools under one roof and be built adjacent to the Athens City Middle School. The concept of the project is organized along linear core between two wings of classrooms which are both two story structures. The connecting core between the classroom wings is thought of as an internal street with all the common school functions exist such as dining, media center, gymnasiums and other shared classrooms. Each wing houses either the primary school or intermediate school and each has a dedicated administration area. Although it is one school structure, the two classroom wings give the feeling that the primary and intermediate grades have their own identity.
The exterior brick color takes its cue from the adjacent middle school to suggest a whole campus experience. Several strategic windows are placed in the classrooms to maximize daylight while working with the cost-effective structural system. The avenue between the wings opens with more glazing and faces a south facing courtyard which accommodates outdoor teaching areas, exterior dining and play areas. The courtyard’s south edge is lined with existing large maple trees. Although the new school replaces a community park, the existing functions of the park migrate to an adjacent green field. Further the new school enhances the neighborhood and community by accommodating a series of functions that can be used after hours, such as the gymnasiums, dining areas, media center and exterior courtyard / play areas.