Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Woodward High design goes 'corporate'

$38M plan features glass atrium

By Jennifer Mrozowski
The Cincinnati Enquirer

A corporate-style atrium enclosed in glass is the proposed focal point of a new $38 million Woodward High School to be built at Reading Road and Seymour Avenue in Bond Hill.

The proposed design for a new Woodward High School by Steed Hammond Paul and DH Architects.
(Steed Hammond Paul and DH Architects)
| ZOOM |
The 261,000-square-foot career technical school, scheduled to open in the 2005-06 school year, was designed to look more like a corporate headquarters than a traditional high school.

Steed Hammond Paul and DH Architects presented the design to the Cincinnati school board Monday. Construction is scheduled to start next school year.

"We didn't want it to look like a typical high school," said Michael P. Dingeldein, vice president of Steed Hammond Paul.

"We wanted it to look more like the technical companies connected with the school."

The design of the new school incorporates three wings that will extend from the atrium to accommodate a restructured high school program at Woodward.

The wings will house programs for advanced technologies, such as computer-aided manufacturing, building technologies and health technologies.

Those programs are slated to open to interested ninth-graders next school year at the current high school.

The new Woodward also includes a two-story, 4,000-square-foot media center, a 1,200-seat arena-style gymnasium and space for a museum that will depict the history of Woodward High School.

Founded in 1831, Woodward is touted as the oldest public high school in the nation.

The current building, which would be demolished, is the fourth to house the school. The renovated football stadium and track will eventually move to where the school now sits.

Community representatives at the meeting said the new look of the 1,200-student school would be an asset.

"This represents the energy and the light that (says) Bond Hill is on the move," said Sam Malone, president of the Bond Hill Community Council.

The new Woodward is part of Cincinnati school district's four-phase, $1 billion plan to build 35 new schools and renovate 31 more over the next decade.

The district has enough money to pay for phase one of the plan, which includes 15 new schools and two renovated schools at nearly $300 million.

In November, voters rejected a $480 million bond issue to help finance the $1 billion construction project, but district officials will return to voters in May to again ask their support for the bond issue.

E-mail jmrozowski@enquirer.com

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