Nipomo High School

Nipomo, CA

New Construction.

In 1997, voters approved a $24 million bond measure with $21 million allocated to build a new high school. PMSM Architects worked with two large community task force groups to develop educational specifications for the 1,800-student high school and monitor the bond expenditures and additional pending state funding and serve as a steward of the district’s and community’s money, resources and trust.

The 86-acre site is surrounded by active agriculture and accessed by only one major roadway. The design objective was to create an open rural environment throughout the campus with a design that is a “good neighbor” to the surrounding agricultural setting. The basis of the design involved clustering buildings around open gathering spaces to create “family” or “small group” areas within the overall complex. This was accomplished with both radial and crossing pedestrian landscaped promenades that connect the core facilities and provide open vistas of the surrounding rural terrain and the campus. The dominant open area is the Quad/Amphitheatre that is surrounded by the Student Support Center, Multi-Use Building, LRC and Science Center.

Diagonally across the Quad are the entrances to the campus and the Forum facility; all supporting a traditional rural atmosphere through architectural shapes, scale, positioning and materials. The Gym, LRC, Student Support Center, Special Education Complex are also utilized for community functions and after school activities.

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