ROB DEAL AIA,
Woodford County Middle School | Versailles, Kentucky
As students began to feel a bit overcrowded in the Woodford County Middle School that had served the county since its construction in 1927, the faculty, staff and school board found themselves at a crossroads: renovate the existing space or start from the ground up with a new building. After much deliberation, it was determined that an investment in a new structure would provide the students and the community more bang for the buck. The steering committee and JRA Architects worked closely together to establish the requisite set of criteria for the new school building including sustainable design considerations, student learning needs, faculty recommendations, and technology enabled-systems.
Today our new middle school facility stands at 127,000 square feet easily meeting the student enrollment of approximately 900 students. The design features a two-story plan with a continuous peaked roof structure over the entire facility, which appropriately blends with the rural surroundings. The building has a sloped-shingle roof to help prevent environmental damage from rain, ice and snow while simultaneously increasing thermal insulation and energy-efficiency. A geothermal HVAC system was also designed into the project to reduce the building’s life-cycle costs and energy consumption. Furthermore, the building is designed so that the gymnasium, cafeteria and library are separated from the school to accommodate other community functions during off hours.
Woodford County Middle School is better able to meet its mission of “supporting, preparing, and growing students toward a successful future” through its new building and the students and community are better for it.