Designer: FRK Architects + Engineers
Project Size: 82,207 sq. ft.
In August 2019, Story and team opened for school one of three active construction projects taking place over the summer for the Norwalk Community School District.
In February 2017, Norwalk residents approved a $32 million bond issue for construction projects for a new elementary school, in addition to renovations at the middle school and high school and expansion at Oviatt Elementary. “To prepare for future growth, each year the District evaluates enrollment and facilities to determine capital projects. In 2015 we determined that one of our top priorities would be construction of a new elementary school,” said Kate Baldwin, Executive Director of Administrative Services for the school district. “We had maxed out our existing elementary school classroom space. The District has also maximized the available campus space to construct building additions, so building a new building was the clear path forward.”
The team broke ground on Orchard Hills Elementary School in April 2018 and had the building open for the start of school this fall. The school features 30 regular classrooms, a cafeteria and a full service kitchen, a competition-size gymnasium, a dedicated music room and art room, a library, a STEM lab, office space and other specialized classrooms. The wings of the building each feature either purple, blue, yellow or green finishes and lighting.
“Story and FRK do a great job of approaching us with solutions rather than bringing issues to our attention without offering a plan forward,” Baldwin said. “We’ve been really fortunate to partner with these two professional building consultants to facilitate our school construction projects.”
Renovations to Norwalk’s middle school and high school were also completed in the fall of 2019, and renovations to Oviatt Elementary School are currently underway.