Excerpt from an article originally published in St. Louis Construction News & Review, May-June 2003
By Jan Niehaus
Within the context of the extended economic slowdown, K-12 school construction is one of our gold-star performers. While other sectors are retrenching, the December 2002 Architectural Record predicted a one percent increase in institutional projects.
St. Louis locals expressed a similar optimism about certain select markets. The final 2002 cyber newsletter published by the AIA St. Louis Chapter described the K-12 education market locally as “strong,” while singling out healthcare and housing as “the hottest markets for design and construction firms in 2003.”…
Clean air issues, mold problems, a push for greater energy efficiency, ongoing technological innovation and new teaching methodologies are additional catalysts for school renovations and construction.
“The classroom of the future” is what John Guenther, Mackey Mitchell principal, is creating at Christian Brothers College (CBC), in collaboration [with] Sonacom IT Partners. “There’s a smart board in every classroom, with projection screen and surround sound,” he said. “Every student has a laptop, and they’re wireless, equipped with flat-pad batteries good for 18 or 19 hours. In a wireless environment, students can go anywhere on campus to study – the great hall, the library, out to the quadrangle or the football stadium.”
Every CBC classroom has its own technology closet, which shares a wall with the hallway, to enable troubleshooting and maintenance without disruption to classes which is why Mackey also moved the cabling end HVAC out of classrooms…