Learning By Design, the nation’s premier source for education design innovation and excellence, has announced that two Horry County schools were recognized with Architectural and Interior Design awards to be presented in its Fall 2018 issue. St. James Intermediate earned the Grand Prize award and Socastee Elementary were both recognized with the Outstanding Project award.
These newly designed buildings provide teachers and students an advantage as it allows them to work and learn in a visually and technologically progressive environment. Firstfloor’s energy-positive facilities aim to provide creative solutions while staying cost-effective; Students and teachers alike benefit significantly from these modernized and sustainable buildings.
“It is humbling that these schools continue to receive such astounding recognition from so many reputable sources,” Robbie Ferris, CEO of SfL+a Architects and Firstfloor Energy Positive stated. “The school board took a risk deciding to do something different when opting for an energy positive design-build concept, and now these buildings are helping put Horry County Schools in the limelight on a national stage.”
Since 1991, Learning By Design has showcased projects that support learning, collaboration, community, and the connection between the human spirit and design to enrich and elevate the quality of education. This year’s seventy-one blind-scored projects represent every phase of education from early childhood and beyond. A panel of six esteemed education-based professionals reviewed, scored, and debated projects in detail, resulting in awards for Grand Prize, Citation of Excellence, Honorable Mention, and Outstanding Project.
The 2018 Jury commented on St. James Intermediate’s Grand Prize Award stating that, “This is a very exciting project. The way that the plan was broken up is very cutting edge. Locating the gym and cafeteria in the center of the school is unlike any school I’ve seen. Daylight floods the cafeteria. It feels more like a student union than cafeteria. The gym that has borrowed lights in the corridors upstairs and a ‘see through’ option into the cafeteria is also very cool. The double height learning commons could be mistaken for a college campus. Great design.”
Features include a patio for outdoor learning, iBar, project pod, brainstorm room, flex class, lecture hall, common areas and much more. By providing children with open learning environments, it promotes a better sense of community, creative nature, more flexibility, various landscapes for learning, sustainability, as well as helping teachers cater to all students and their different learning needs.