Ottawa Township High School

2010 Biennial Distinguished Building Award Eastern Illinois Chapter AIA

After 30 years without a classroom addition Ottawa Township High School was in need of more classroom space for students, and with a change to a closed campus lunch program the old cafeteria, located in the basement, was no longer large enough to handle 1600 students.

When the school received a nearly $20 million grant, they had the opportunity to provide upgrades throughout the 306,000 square feet of existing building and remedy the space issues. A two story addition with 16 classrooms and approximately 23,000 square feet was built adjacent to the 1931 Manual Arts Building. The architectural elements that were incorporated in the 1931 building were studied and developed into the new imagery in order to create a unified street frontage without direct replication. A new freestanding building was created to house the auto and wood shop, which were in need of major renovation and upgrades. This allowed the former shop space, which had skylight monitors, 17 feet high ceilings and 13 feet tall windows to be remodeled into the new kitchen and open cafeteria which provided a food court with a variety of seating areas, a great deal of natural light and a seating capacity of 670 people.

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