Ratcliff was engaged to review and study the Sacred Heart Science Department which resides on two floors in a six-level classroom building. Team members worked with faculty and school leadership to master plan the two floors. We reviewed different layout options to support their desire for classroom flexibility, improved building systems and technology and associated costs. The master plan solution identified four phases of renovation and modernization work.
Flexible design features such as writable surfaces, ample power outlets, and moveable furniture were incorporated into the space. This allows for students to easily break out into groups and collaborate with minimum set-up time. Each room is equipped with new audio/ visual technology as well as upgraded mechanical systems to maximize thermal comfort. An automatic light-dimming system adjusts the amount of light in the classroom to off-set natural light throughout the day. Additional acoustical treatment in walls and ceilings are designed to enhance students’ learning experience. Sustainable and healthy finishes minimize off-gassing in the interior environment. In addition, each classroom features a storefront system that opens to the hallway which allows natural light to reach classrooms on the other side where there are no windows.