Papago Elementary School
Papago School, built in 1953, is deeply rooted in its surrounding community. These connections are made through the transformative history of the site, and the scale and culture of its setting. The generations of neighboring families who attended the school are vital. For this reason thematic traces became the inspiration for a new 21st century campus design.
These traces can be found in the layers of history and public space that exist on this dynamic urban site. The landscape itself also serves as a presence of continuity, connecting people to their surroundings.
The idea of transparency mediates between these public and private spaces connecting the school to the community. It thus creates an open and pleasing environment with multi-functional indoor and outdoor spaces. These dynamic learning spaces encourage students to interact with their peers, seniors, and teachers, thus breaking down barriers and enhancing a holistic learning environment.
The school building lends itself to be viewed as a space that will foster academic interactions and be used as a teaching tool with educational content integrated directly into the design.
The materiality of the project features reused masonry from the existing building, combined with durable metals intended to last many years. This palette honors a theme of continuity serving function, identity, and contemporary technology.
All of these qualities exemplify Papago as a true 21st century school.