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Brookview Elementary recognized with architectural award

Brookview Elementary School design concept. Courtesy of BWBR

Brookview Elementary School received American Institute of Architects Minnesota's highest recognition for design at the association's annual conference on architecture in November. The recently opened school was one of only four projects to be recognized this year with the Honor Award.

"The way students are taught has evolved dramatically in the last several years. With Brookview, we were able to create an environment that does more than enhance teaching. It elevates students to learn in different settings beyond the classroom," said Steve Berg, project manager with BWBR, the design firm for the school. "The school district embraced Brookview's innovative design and planning, and we're honored to see such effort be rewarded by the AIA."

BWBR designed the 74,000-square-foot school with collaboration as its central focus. The school is split into smaller learning communities utilizing three pods where students find an identifiable space to gather and grow, and teachers can expand learning opportunities beyond the formal classroom. High ceilings, bright colors and abundant daylight enrich the student experience and stimulate both the academic and social aspect of the space.

A central zone houses shared student spaces, including a learning resource center, gymnasium, cafeteria, and special education, music and art classrooms. The school entrance was envisioned more as a front porch to welcome and invite students and families into an active and inspiring environment.

Brookview Elementary is the first new elementary school to be built in School District 834 since 1998. Located in Woodbury, the school has the capacity to serve approximately 450 students, however is already near capacity. The Stillwater school board voted to add eight classrooms, with an estimated cost of up to $5.5 million. The project will be funded through the district's lease levy.