By Jennifer Mrozowski
The Cincinnati Enquirer
The two latest school designs released Monday by Cincinnati Public Schools show that the district is shying away from cookie-cutter designs.
A cylindrical brick media center will anchor the new Pleasant Hill Elementary, a 650-student pre-K-to-8 school to be built on the current school's site in College Hill.
"It's symbolic of the importance Pleasant Hill school gives to learning and knowledge," said John Kornbluh, project manager for the architectural firm Burgess and Niple.
Building costs are estimated at $12.3 million for the 84,000-square-foot school.
The new Winton Hills Academy, which will house 450 students in grades pre-K to 8 on Winneste Avenue in Winton Place, incorporates two interior courtyards into the school's contemporary design.
The fully enclosed courtyards can be used as outdoor classrooms and will draw light into the school.
The design also includes an arched front entry of masonry material and, possibly, a blue glaze.
"We're trying to make it a cheerful, pleasant place for children," said Christina Willis," architect for BHDP Architecture.
Winton Hills also will be built on its existing site. Construction costs are estimated at $10.3 million for the 66,000-square-foot building.
Construction on both schools is slated to begin this year. Students are scheduled to move into the new schools in 2005.
They will be housed in their old buildings until construction is complete; the old schools will then be demolished.
The two schools are part of Cincinnati Public Schools' $1 billion plan to build 35 new schools and renovate 31 more over the next decade.
The school board will vote whether to approve the two designs at a later board meeting.
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