Prince George's County Public Schools
170,000 sf, 1,200 students
tracking LEED Silver
Building on a 40-year partnership with Prince George’s County Public Schools, the new Glenridge Middle School involved the development of a 1,200-student school to be sited in the Glenridge Community Park in Woodlawn, Maryland. It was immediately apparent that many stakeholders would need to be engaged to ensure that the school met the needs of the students, families, staff, and neighbors to ensure the school and park were fully integrated with each other and the surrounding community. The siting of the building and its configuration would become critical components in ensuring that the school lives in harmony with the park which it inhabits.
Community workshops and charrettes yielded a set of guiding principles that informed each stage of the design process: Provide resources and spaces for students to thrive and achieve their goals; become a community hub that is open and accessible to its diverse neighborhood, integrate with its Glenridge Park setting and connect with nature; be welcoming and inviting to all students, parents, staff and neighbors; enhance a sense of pride in the community; and become a school in the park.
The resulting “School in the Park” provides vast educational resources and community amenities to the Glenridge neighborhood, while respecting the natural resources and enhancing the park setting surrounding the building. The project is expected to be open for the school community in August 2023.
To serve shared-use goals, spaces are programmed throughout the building for shared use, including a community-use suite, gymnasium and fitness center, exterior courtyards, and the central commons space.
Abundant transparency and transitional spaces between interior program and the natural park setting were achieved through use of large curtain walls at community commons and courtyards, as well as between school and park spaces.
Where students’ dreams will come true.
Groundbreaking Ceremony, Prince George’s County Public Schools
To effectively engage the sloping topography of the park site and scale the massing, the 3-story building is stepped with the grades of the park site. This strategy also integrates the school with its natural environment, providing sweeping views of the tree canopy from all windows and nestling in the forest in the Community Commons.