January 9, 2019

Two RB+B projects win Design Awards through the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Association 4 Learning Environments (A4LE)

Last month, two RB+B projects were acknowledged for their creative and responsive educational planning and design by the Association 4 Learning Environments’ Rocky Mountain Chapter. The Mobile Academic Classroom (Poudre School District) received a Summit Design Award (for renovations) in a special new category, appropriately dubbed the, “Magic School Bus” award. The Early Childhood Center […]

Last month, two RB+B projects were acknowledged for their creative and responsive educational planning and design by the Association 4 Learning Environments’ Rocky Mountain Chapter. The Mobile Academic Classroom (Poudre School District) received a Summit Design Award (for renovations) in a special new category, appropriately dubbed the, “Magic School Bus” award. The Early Childhood Center at the Boulder Jewish Community Center took home the Peak Design Award for new construction.

Both projects were judged on criteria within four categories: (1) Planning Process, (2) Learning Environment, (3) Physical Environment, and (4) Community Environment.

The Mobile Academic Classroom (MAC) was honored for its creativity shown by a project that re-thinks what a learning environment can be. Judges shared that while the project was difficult to compare to other stationary buildings, it was, “impossible for the jury not to honor the project. The MAC is singular in its creativity and illustrates that a learning environment can occur in a multitude of forms. The jury was very impressed with the thoughtfulness evident in every inch of the transformed bus. In addition, the lightness and brightness of the overall space truly creates a unique and fun learning environment. Most importantly, the jury loved the underlying goal of extending the classroom into the community throughout the summer and the care used in designing the three discreet learning settings within the old bus.”

The ECE at the Boulder Jewish Community Center stood out to jurists for, “its overall attention to detail in all aspects of the project. The building implements the Reggio Emilia Philosophy which dictates the building serve as a neutral and natural backdrop to the children’s learning. The jury also was impressed with the commitment to the Design Advisory Group process and how the project engaged the community and realized the identified themes of Gathering and Inquisitive Play. The multi-year planning process is evident in the coordinated design of indoor and outdoor spaces. The jury appreciated the outdoor spaces being a seamless extension of the indoor spaces utilizing natural materials (water, mud and sticks) as play ‘equipment’. The playground looked and felt more like a backyard.”

RB+B design teams have been honored throughout our practice to work with visionary clients whose passion matches ours in regards to creating educational environments that are creative, functional, and responsive to helping their students grow and thrive. These two projects are examples of how a collaborative and inclusive design process can result in outstanding spaces for kids to learn.

More about the A4LE:

The Association for Learning Environments believes that:

  • Facilities impact the learning, development and behavior of the facility user;
  • The planning process is essential for quality facilities;
  • Sharing and networking improves the planning process; and
  • There is a standard by which to measure.

The organization is a non-profit whose sole mission is improving the places where children learn. Regional chapters spread this mission on a local level.

December 12, 2017

Emerald Elementary Earns Peak Design Award from the A4LE Rocky Mountain Chapter

RB+B Architects, in collaboration with Fielding Nair International, is pleased to announce that Boulder Valley School District’s Emerald Elementary School has been named a Peak Design Award winner from the Rocky Mountain Chapter Association 4 Learning Environments (A4LE). The project is one of BVSD’s Exemplar Schools that employs a new way of teaching and 21st […]

RB+B Architects, in collaboration with Fielding Nair International, is pleased to announce that Boulder Valley School District’s Emerald Elementary School has been named a Peak Design Award winner from the Rocky Mountain Chapter Association 4 Learning Environments (A4LE). The project is one of BVSD’s Exemplar Schools that employs a new way of teaching and 21st Century design. The project is also net-zero ready and targeted to operate at just 30 kBTU/sf/yr. Swinerton Builders enabled the building come to life.

The Rocky Mountain Chapter A4LE awards recognize excellence in four areas of educational design: planning process, physical environment, learning environment, and community connection. The new Emerald Elementary replaces the existing building on the same site and was built while the site remained operational. The facility deliberately encourages more collaborative, student-centered, project-based activity. 

Many traditional areas of a school were reimagined at Emerald. Inside the building, a central gathering space that would once have served as the media center is redefined as the Curiosity Center to better reflect its use as a place for gathering, research, discovery and project creation. Collaborative learning and project areas are associated with groups of three to five classrooms and teacher collaboration and planning areas are located throughout. The preschool and kindergarten wing has a common teaching/reading area. Transparency between learning areas and the outdoors was also a key component of the design.

The 56,000-square-foot building cost roughly $18.7 million. More details on the project can be found here.

November 8, 2017

High Plains PK-8 School Earns National Educational Planning Award

RB+B Architects, together with thinkSMART planning, inc., is privileged to announce that High Plains PK-8 School in Loveland, CO has achieved one of the highest honors awarded in educational planning excellence. The Association 4 Learning Environments’ (A4LE) LEsolutions Awards recognize projects that stimulate systemic change in the educational system by addressing difficult questions, challenging the status quo, and raising […]

RB+B Architects, together with thinkSMART planning, inc., is privileged to announce that High Plains PK-8 School in Loveland, CO has achieved one of the highest honors awarded in educational planning excellence. The Association 4 Learning Environments’ (A4LE) LEsolutions Awards recognize projects that stimulate systemic change in the educational system by addressing difficult questions, challenging the status quo, and raising expectations. The awards embody great architectural design solutions, and the successful components and characteristics of these projects have been founded in an interactive process that engages multiple stakeholders to create educational environments that hold purpose and distinction within a community.*

High Plains was one of eight schools selected from an international pool of 59 entries to receive an LEsolutions Award. Categories of recognition included New Learning Environment, Post-Secondary, Renovation/Addition, Small Project, Exceptional Planning (the category of award for High Plains), and a Juror’s Choice award.

“We like to say that the best projects come from the best clients, and High Plains is no exception. Without the Facilities and Administrative leadership from Thompson School District, as well as the collaborative involvement from High Plains’ Design Advisory Group and Construction Review Committees, this project would not have achieved the results that it has. Significant support from these groups, the Loveland community, the professional talents of our entire Design Consulting Team, and Heath Construction are what truly made this project a success,” says Corky Bradley, the project’s Principal in Charge.

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About the Association 4 Learning Environments
The A4LE believes that great schools begin with open dialog and deliberate planning. As such, the Association is committed to recognizing learning environments that positively affect the teaching and learning process while serving as an example of sound planning principles. They result in appropriate and effective design solutions that reflect the community to which they belong.
 
Click here for more information on the award winners from the A4LE website.

*Information from the A4LE.

August 16, 2017

Boulder JCC wins 2017 ASID Crystal Awards

RB+B Architects announces that the Boulder Jewish Community Center wins 2017 Crystal Awards from the Colorado Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers. The project received two awards: Commercial-Institutional Award and Judges’ Merit Award for Commercial. The Crystal Awards, organized by the Colorado Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), is held […]

RB+B Architects announces that the Boulder Jewish Community Center wins 2017 Crystal Awards from the Colorado Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers. The project received two awards: Commercial-Institutional Award and Judges’ Merit Award for Commercial.

The Crystal Awards, organized by the Colorado Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), is held annually to honor projects that have achieved excellence in Interior Design. Project entries can be submitted within nine commercial categories (as well as residential) and are blind-judged by a team of established interior commercial and residential industry leaders from disciplines such as industrial designers, architects and educators located throughout the United States. The 53,000-square-foot, LEED Certified, Boulder Jewish Community Center (JCC) was recognized with two honors last week at the organization’s gala: the Award for Commercial-Institutional projects and the Judges’ Merit Award for a commercial space.

The JCC is a community center open to everyone, completed last year. The JCC embodies a timeless quality with local natural materials, outdoor gathering spaces and an abundant amount of natural light. The entry courtyard, with its signature massive stone wall, brings together visitors and is a protected space for gatherings and events. The building is comprised of two primary wings: the daycare and early childhood center housed in one half of the building, while the other half houses a community hall with glorious views of the Flatirons, a fitness center, Jewish library and classrooms serving infants through seniors. The selection of finishes and materials possess a timeless quality and aesthetic, while withstanding daily use.  All finishes respect the importance and symbolism in the building. Porcelain tile, carpet, vinyl wood and engineered wood flooring contributed to the contemporary interpretation of the design.  Wood ceiling and laminated beams lend textural warmth. Finishes in the Early Childhood wing are light and natural, lit from all sides and from above.

“We’re very happy to receive these two awards for the interior design of the JCC,” says RB+B’s Principal in Charge for the project, Rebecca Spears. “Working closely with Kellie, Susan, Roberta, Jonathan, and the rest of the design team, we were able to achieve their vision of a peaceful, welcoming building, transfused with warmth and light that portrays a solid, lasting presence. Congratulations to the members of the JCC on their award-winning building!” 

January 9, 2017

High Plains PK-8 School Earns Peak Design Award by A4LE

High Plains PK-8 School earned the prestigious 2016 Peak Design Award for excellence in planning and design. The award, given by the Association 4 Learning Environments (A4LE) Rocky Mountain Chapter, is given to a project that excelled in four key areas: planning process, community input, learning environment, and physical environment. High Plains, which opened last […]

High Plains PK-8 School earned the prestigious 2016 Peak Design Award for excellence in planning and design. The award, given by the Association 4 Learning Environments (A4LE) Rocky Mountain Chapter, is given to a project that excelled in four key areas: planning process, community input, learning environment, and physical environment.

High Plains, which opened last fall in Loveland, Colorado, is a vibrant PK-8 school that accommodates 600 students and emphasizes Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Match (STEAM) as the foundation of its curriculum. High Plains is the first district-run school for preschool through eighth-grade classes, and the first sustainably designed facility in the Thompson School District.

High Plains integrates a strong approach to outdoor learning, which led to a new, cutting edge approach to the facility’s architectural design. The building takes advantage of majestic Front Range views and creates a constant connection to the outdoors.

The north wing houses administrative offices, Pre-K and Kindergarten suites, gymnasium, and cafeteria while the south wing is geared towards grades 1-8 learning. The south wing is divided into four study pods (two on the first floor and two on the second). Each pod has four traditional classrooms (grouped by grade), restrooms, small group space and a shared STEAM room.

The school physically embeds mathematical concepts within the design. The cafeteria floor pattern is in set dimensions of feet in one direction and meters in the other with different angles etched into classroom floors and both binary and morse code murals to label the elevator on different levels. Other learning elements integrated into the design include concrete animal prints of various native species, exposed and labeled pipes and cables to show building systems, and special lighting fixtures formed of a collage of the school’s mascot. All of these features encourage exploration, discovery, and wonder within the physical environment.

The school is tracking LEED Gold Certification.

August 1, 2016

Tivoli Brewing Wins ASID Colorado Crystal Award

Congratulations to Tivoli Brewing Co on receiving a 2016 Crystal Award from ASID Colorado in the category of Commercial Renovation under 15,000 square feet. RB+B Architects completed the renovation of this historic building in association with Ruggels Mabe Terrell Architecture. Renovation of this historic space produced a unique working brewery, tap room, restaurant and educational […]

Congratulations to Tivoli Brewing Co on receiving a 2016 Crystal Award from ASID Colorado in the category of Commercial Renovation under 15,000 square feet. RB+B Architects completed the renovation of this historic building in association with Ruggels Mabe Terrell Architecture.

Renovation of this historic space produced a unique working brewery, tap room, restaurant and educational space that is utilized by students, faculty and the community. The new stainless steel vessels and piping supporting the 30 barrel craft brewery have been inserted among historic remnants of the original operation. Twin 250-barrel (equivalent to 7,750 gallons) copper vessels towering through four stories of the building flank the opening between new brewhouse and production. 

The tie to history is brought out in features of the Tap Room. Table tops and restroom doors are made from re-claimed wood, and old beer bottle caps accent the restroom floors. Tap room walls are painted with the faded images of beer labels from the past similar to “ghost painting” advertisements. Original brew vessels, columns, brick and plaster have been preserved and are an integral part of the successful design, bringing this space back to its historical roots.

More details and photos of this vibrant space can be found here.

December 4, 2014

STEM Conversion at Northglenn High School Earns CEFPI Rocky Mountain Chapter “Summit Design Award”

RB+B Architects received the Summit Design Award last night at the CEFPI Rocky Mountain Chapter’s annual awards celebration for the STEM Conversion Project at Northglenn High School. Northglenn High School is a large 1960’s-era comprehensive high school serving 1,900 students throughout Adams 12 Five Star Schools in northern Denver. The District provides aquatics programs for its […]

RB+B Architects received the Summit Design Award last night at the CEFPI Rocky Mountain Chapter’s annual awards celebration for the STEM Conversion Project at Northglenn High School.

Northglenn High School is a large 1960’s-era comprehensive high school serving 1,900 students throughout Adams 12 Five Star Schools in northern Denver. The District provides aquatics programs for its students and for decades the swimming pool at Northglenn High School was the primary facility for these programs. When the District constructed a new comprehensive high school, a new aquatic center was incorporated into that facility and the aging pool at Northglenn High School became obsolete.

The principal of the school expressed a need for more educational space, and the District realized that the pool vessel and the building envelope were in relatively good condition. The District elected to re-purpose the existing Natatorium and Change House space into new educational space for their STEM program.

The Design Team worked with the district’s Design Advisory Group to establish a space program that included large STEM Studios for each desired pathway, a shared fabrication space, a shared large presentation space, a shared small presentation space, and shared breakout spaces. The intent was to provide generous spaces for direct instruction and lab-based exploration, and to supplement those spaces with spaces that support small and large breakout group collaboration, hands-on investigation and application, and presentation of findings to peers. Having access to a collection of different spaces affords instructors the opportunity to direct their students in a variety of learning settings.

The spaces are organized such that the large Studios are around the periphery and the presentation spaces are in the center, across the circulation path from one another. The large presentation space may flex to open to the circulation space on one side, and the small presentation space may flex to open to the circulation space from the other side, or both may be opened simultaneously to create a gallery atmosphere for special events, such as an exhibition of student work. A reception area, workroom, kitchenette, and large and small conference rooms were provided to support instructors and visiting outside professionals as well as after-hours use of the presentation spaces. In circulation areas, small informal spaces were created as well as spaces for storage and display of student work.

For more information on the project, click here.

October 10, 2014

Windsor Readiness Center Earns AIA Colorado North Merit Award for Commercial Architecture

Congratulations to all the winners of the AIA Colorado and local chapter awards, as honored last night at the AIA Colorado Practice + Design Conference Gala in Keystone, Colorado. RB+B Architects is pleased to note that one of our projects – the Army National Guard’s Windsor Readiness Center – was among the honorees. The project […]

Congratulations to all the winners of the AIA Colorado and local chapter awards, as honored last night at the AIA Colorado Practice + Design Conference Gala in Keystone, Colorado.

RB+B Architects is pleased to note that one of our projects – the Army National Guard’s Windsor Readiness Center – was among the honorees. The project received a Merit Award for Commercial Architecture through the AIA Colorado North Chapter.

Designed to house and serve the 1157th Forward Support Company, the Readiness Center for the Colorado Army National Guard sets a new level of high quality, durable and sustainable design. Controlled daylighting, ground-source heat exchange system, recycled and reclaimed materials, building orientation, drought resistant plant materials and roof-mounted PV panels contributed to LEED Platinum certification. Comfort and security are delivered in a contemporary, efficient and specialized design.

Symbolically, the facility serves as a means to strengthen and honor military traditions while instilling a sense of pride in members of the unit. The architectural character of the Windsor Readiness Center is defined with a powerful form and color arranged in a linear design which allows for excellent solar orientation and daylighting throughout. The large sloping metal roof creates an impactful shape. The brightly colored interior/underside of the metal roof creates a flash of color that runs throughout the public portion of the building.  The linear quality grounds the building to the natural horizontal sweep of the eastern plains.  Arcing forms in the landscaping design at the entry as well as inside the main hall repeat the forms seen at many of the nearby industrial buildings, silos and tanks.

Working closely with military personnel and representatives allowed the design team to produce a high quality project that is efficient, aesthetically pleasing and will support the community-based citizen soldiers and their families for many years to come.

The building is situated in a generally east-west position in the center of the site taking advantage of the drainage patterns through the site to provide part of the Anti-Terrorism/Force Protection separation between the building and the Privately Owned Vehicles.  This orientation presents the main entrance and public portions of the building towards Great Western Drive and shields the military vehicle parking on the south and west side of the building leaving room for a future Field Maintenance Shop facility on the southwest corner of the property.