Located at the high point of the city, Edina High School has a prominent visual and cultural presence in the community. As part of a district-wide referendum, the addition and renovations to the West Campus sought to solve program, circulation, image, and safety issues at both the campus and building scale.
The new campus plan creates dynamic views, both to and from the buildings, by giving the site a new sense of entry and order. The original plan was built with a one-way entry and circulation drive immediately adjacent to the buildings. The new entry drive was pulled to the west edge of the site, allowing green activity fields to be placed next to the building, giving students access to them without crossing traffic. Program areas in the project are re-ordered into groups that relate to the perimeter of the site, creating outdoor rooms between the building and activity fields. A new campus walk allows students and staff to circulate the length of the campus throughout the day and evening.
Existing understated entries in the building have been replaced with new volumes that link the interior spaces to the campus walk and community beyond. These easily identifiable copper clad volumes defined by transparent, light-filled lobbies serve as warm, inviting spaces for waiting students on short winter days and provide easy afterhours access to events from the expanded parking lots. The lobbies act as physical and visual connectors to the campus walk. New building masses shift scale to reflect program and create relief in the facade. Brick color creates contrast between the existing and new volumes and is punctured by clear and translucent glass to bring natural light into the building.