Graduation Year

2008

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.Arch.

Degree Granting Department

Architecture and Community Design

Major Professor

Stanley Russell, M.Arch.

Keywords

Blake High School, Hillsborough River, Down Town Tampa, River Edge

Abstract

For my thesis I will design an education facility. That education facility will strive to meet with today's security needs and will provide a safe-feeling place for growth. In identifying the problem, I found two main causes for the described conditions in today's schools. They are improper adaptation and uniform building type. Improper adaptation has to do with surface applications, rather than integrating with the social fabric of the school's communal requirements. Unfortunate incidents have caused the solutions to heightened security around schools to be fortressing and disrupting to the human activities. Metal detectors, restricted areas and alarmed doors are some of the possibly necessary but often overlooked attributes of the school design, which in concentration create a trapping, prison-like feeling where they should suggest a place of voluntary education and inspiration for the future.

I will utilize CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) strategies, research codes, new building technologies, materials, systems, arrangements, precedent studies, and testing through simulation or experiment, in a form of installation. I can determine possible solutions and interventions using these resources. Uniform building type sets a counterproductive precedent. Today we must look at places were young people want to be, and splice the desired attributes of those places in to modern schools. In fact, uniform building type is one of the reasons for improper adaptation. Through interviewing school administrators, building officials, students, faculty, psychologists, builders and other construction professionals, I can identify the mandatory requirements.

Implementing security and safety attributes as part of the concept, and knowing trends in technology can help secure educational facilities while still maintaining the qualities that are conducive to a learning environment. As stated by Holly Richmond in Contract magazine, February 2006 edition, "Students are the most crucial design element in today's schools," says Kerry Leonard, principal and senior planner at O'Donnell, Wicklund, Pigozzi and Peterson Architects in Chicago and chair of the advisory group for the AIA Committee on Architecture for Education. "Understanding how people learn and creating environments that respond to this knowledge is the best building block to start from."

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