Rainier Beach High School

Recent Updates

Project Completion

The Rainier Beach Beach High School modernization project was completed in early September, 2008, in time for students to begin the school year at the newly renovated campus.

The School Design Team Process - Planning for the Future

School Design Team meetings were conducted to brainstorm and prioritize modernizations for this short term project, as well as to create a long term master plan for the school. The School Design Team recommended prioritizing academic upgrades including library, science and culinary arts program renovations, as well as overall building upgrades. Design and construction were phased over two years to accommodate interim facilities and a mid-year winter construction start.

Library Expansion & Renovation

The primary focus of the project was the relocation of the library to the east side of the school, and its expansion to meet the standard of libraries at other Seattle high schools. The new 8,000 s.f. library contains multiple spaces that can each accommodate a full classroom. An adjacent computer lab is available for classroom use or library use. Soft seating areas provide space for quiet reading.

The east-facing windows take advantage of views of Seward Park Avenue, and Lake Washington beyond. The new performing arts stage and adjacent outdoor deck enable small arts performances to be held in the library. This second story deck also creates a visible element to upgrade and define the school’s main entry.

Academic Upgrades

To recoup the classroom space lost in the expansion of the library, the first floor computer lab and career center were each divided into two classrooms. The library book stack room became a fifth new classroom. The career center now occupies the former first floor library space in a very approachable environment, with an adjacent research library.

The culinary arts program was upgraded with a new full commercial kitchen. A new separate dining area is shared between classroom use and dining for teachers. Minor upgrades were made to the residential kitchen.

The Science classrooms were upgraded with peninsula-style lab areas to accommodate 32 students for program’s life science and biology focus. New mechanical systems include fume hoods, acid waste and sediment traps, and 100% exhaust air.

Building Upgrades

The existing corridors throughout the main school have new flooring, lighting and ceiling tiles for a brighter, modern feel to the school. Low-e windows were installed on the east side of the building, with new window shades throughout. Masonry and roofing were repaired. All restrooms were renovated with improved ventilation, partitions, and ADA upgrades. New electrical and mechanical systems and controls will reduce energy consumption.

Project Summary

  • Master Planning
  • Library relocated, expanded to 8,000 sq. ft
  • New performing arts area, and balcony addition
  • Solatube skylights and wall removal enhance daylight in the library
  • Gathering areas in the library for small and large classes
  • New entry sequence and improved landscaping at the entry
  • Handrail on outdoor reading deck with Mt Rainier and water motifs
  • New computer lab adjacent to library
  • Renovation of classrooms, corridors, and career center
  • Science classroom lab and HVAC upgrades
  • Larger art classrooms with more storage, new tackable wall surfaces
  • New mechanical and electrical systems & controls in areas of work
  • New air handling unit in library; new HVAC unit in computer lab
  • Improved ventilation in all art classrooms
  • New culinary arts commercial kitchen for 12 chefs on a line, similar to college level facilities and commercial kitchens
  • Recycled, renewable, reusable materials & other sustainable features
  • Improved natural lighting, direct/indirect classroom lighting
  • Energy efficient lighting throughout corridors
  • Energy efficient low e windows along the east façade of project area
  • Project funding: 75% BTA; 25% BEX

Back to BEX III