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Brighton 27J School District tabs Denver-based architecture group for new high school design work

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By The Staff

BRIGHTON – School District 27J has selected an architect to guide the design and development of the district’s third high school. Denver-based DLR Group Architects was selected because of their expertise.

“DLR will bring their national expertise and considerable design resources to the table as they work with 27J to develop a vision and concept for our third high school,” 27J Planning Manager Joy Gerdom said in a district press release. “We look forward to this process.

Funding for the design process will be provided by the district’s Capital Facility Fee Foundation, a district news release said.

A third high school would relieve the overcrowding at Brighton High School, which is over capacity, and Prairie View High School, which is nearing capacity, as well as accommodate the district's anticipated increase in student enrollment. The high school would be built on 75 acres of property previously purchased by the district near 136th Avenue and Yosemite Street.

The planning of a new high school is jut one of the options 27J is considering to deal with space issues at the high school level. Other discussions will include daily scheduling changes and using off-site space to educate students.

The architect will be guiding district educational leaders through an educational specification process. Gerdom said the educational specifications that are developed, which will entail a number of criteria including technology and classroom space, will become a benchmark for all district high schools, not just the planned high school.

“DLR Group is pleased to partner with 27J to help create a vision for high school 3,” Principal Architect for DLR Group Bob Binder said. “This project offers the opportunity to provide additional secondary education capacity within the district as well as create 21st Century learning environments that will benefit 27J for many years to come.”

When the educational specification process is finished, architects will help the district form a design advisory group consisting of 27J educational leaders and members of the public. Their work will culminate with color renderings of the building and the site as well as a design video. The design work is expected to be completed by December 2013.

The high school is being designed with the anticipation of a fall 2017 opening date. Construction of the school is dependent on voter approval of a school construction bond, possibly in 2014. The board of education will make the final decision on a possible bond election.