Landscape Architect & Specifier News

JUN 2015

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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In a long-standing association with the Chicago Public Schools, the Public Building Commission of Chicago manages millions of dollars of work for the CPS and has been instrumental in the "Modern Schools Across Chicago" initiative, a $1 billion dollar plan to bring brand new schools to Chicago's communities. Under "Modern Schools Across Chicago," the PBC and CPS have planned new high schools using a prototype design in which the schools have a gymnasium and indoor pool, available to the public during non-school hours. Each project embraces the type of positive social change and facilities where residents can gather to share the common values that truly build communities. Sarah E. Goode STEM Academy, located in the Ashburn neighborhood of Chicago's 18th Ward, serves 1,200 high school students and the community. The design incorporates features into the building to make it safer, stronger, more technologically adaptable and more environmentally friendly. Such features include virtually indestructible block walls, green roofs, programmable HVAC systems, low emission building materials, and solar panels. The 17.3 acre site provides athletic facilities and points of interest and education, offers outdoor seating opportunities, and connects the site elements to the school and the neighborhood at large. New site landscaping was designed to complement the modern architecture and enhance a campus-like, pedestrian oriented environment. The exterior sport facilities include a baseball field, softball field, running track, tennis courts, and combination soccer and football field. Right The north side of the campus offers 40 8'x5' above ground community garden plots. Ten of the segmental retaining wall units (Belgard 'BelAir') are handicapped accessible. PHOTO: STEVE HALL FOR HEDRICH BLESSING Below, Right The site, previously a brownfield with leaking underground storage tanks, features diverse native plantings with plant education signs, a biology garden, community gardens, rain gardens, outdoor classroom/picnic area, bleachers, custom concrete sport seating, council ring, a cistern and geothermal field. The outdoor sport facilities include a baseball field, softball field, running track, tennis courts and a combination soccer/football field. Above, Left The vertical colored glass panes for the music/arts wing are expressive of the creativity going on within. The rusticated brick is in keeping with brick neighborhood homes, as well as the Chicago Public Schools' goal for 100 year buildings. PHOTO: STEVE HALL FOR HEDRICH BLESSING 72 Landscape Architect and Specifier News

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