When the Tulare City School District decided to construct the new Heritage Elementary School on an old dairy farm site, they foresaw a school what would strongly represent this agricultural community. Administrators, teachers parents and the community were brought together to discuss the possibility of a school designed to reflect the agricultural history of the area while providing a modern educational environment. The building's external forms and materials are designed to integrate with the surrounding agricultural community. They are reminiscent of barns, silos, sheds and windmill structures prevalent in the area. The use of metal roofing and galvanized corrugated metal siding is a familiar material and provides a practical low maintenance exterior for the school.
The California project consists of twenty-four classrooms, six kindergarten classrooms, a multipurpose building, administration and media center building and a windmill tower. Each classroom building consists of two units of four classrooms with the teacher’s workroom, counseling office, restrooms and other support facilities conveniently located between classroom units.
The barn shaped multipurpose building is designed with a serving kitchen at one end and a stage at the other end. A large roll up door allows the stage to be used for outdoor performances facing the grass quadrangle. A clerestory runs the length of the multipurpose room adding daylight above the exposed trusses and ductwork. The shape of the administration office is reminiscent of a silo.
Community response to the new school has been tremendous. The design provides a stimulating educational environment, encourages social interaction, and has brought identity and pride to the agricultural community.
This project utilized 85,000 sq. ft. of the MBCI LokSeam SSR panel, 88,000 sq. ft. of PBC on the wall and soffitt. The 24 gauge Galvalume LokSeam panels were coated with the MBCI Signature 300 Series paint (PVDF) in Rustic Red. The PBC panels were Galvalume Plus and 20 gauge material was used on the wall and 24 gauge on the soffitt.
The designer was ATI Architects & Engineers, Danville, CA. The general contractor and roofing contractor was Aral E. Micham, Inc., Woodlake, CA.