nathan casteel


(DLR Group, 2009)

Metea Valley High School serves one of the nation’s fastest-growing districts, houses 3,000 students and supports myriad progressive learning concepts.
The site design is unique to this building type: the small amount of available green space is brought into the building rather than placed skirting the roadway.
The design achievement lies in the soaring, inspirational, daylight-filled spaces that enhance positive behavior and academic performance; and achieved despite a uniquely high efficiency of 150 sf/student (national average between 180 and 220 sf/student).
Every opportunity was taken to capture light and views. Stairs become light shafts, the Commons expands spatially into the courtyard, the Library is bathed in diffuse natural light. The courtyards allow the students freedom to view, experience, and learn outdoors in a secure environment.

The project is built from locally-sourced, readily available, low-tech, low-cost, high-durability materials, and the building achieves its aesthetic through a studied and practical composition of these materials.