Resourceful expansion

Recently, Wheaton Warrenville Community Unit School District 200, Wheaton, Ill., celebrated the completion of more than three years of construction and renovation at both of its high schools. The building program brought much-needed additional space and supports the district's enhanced curriculum.

In 2003, Wheaton Warrenville South High School operated 26 mobile classrooms, and Wheaton North High School operated 22. Even with the temporary space, traffic jams still affected the main buildings.

The mobile classrooms have been replaced with added space that makes the schools 40 percent larger. The schools feature updated materials, natural light streaming through clerestory windows, food kiosks, new college and career centers, and technology-rich spaces.

Cost and site constraints at each school prevented cafeteria and library expansion. In response, designers created flexible, open commons spaces with a “town square” concept in mind. In each school, the commons area functions as an activity space for students and staff, as well as a hub that offers “storefront” access to administrative offices. Resource centers were created to address the need for more library space.

The architect for this project is Legat Architects, Inc., Waukegan, Ill.

Start: April 2004

Completion: August 2006

Project area: 300,000+ sq. ft. (additions); 75,000+ sq. ft. (renovations)

Cost: $56,874,000

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