Jurupa Hills High School is the fifth comprehensive campus for the suburban Fontana Unified School District and this unique campus marks a decidedly different approach to design, curriculum delivery and sustainability. A committee of District staff, community and student stakeholders provided input and direction at each step of the design process.
The 275,000 sf complex is completely housed under one roof, which is rare for the region. This approach allowed the District to acquire less land (an often overlooked sustainable feature) while still constructing a facility which shields the students, faculty and staff from the routinely 100 degree heat and 70 mph winds that impact the site.
The heart of the campus is the 400 foot long, two-story, sky lit mall which connects the academic and public spaces. The campus floor plan allows the office, gymnasium, theater, lecture hall and cafeteria to be used independently by spectators, patrons and visitors without opening the remainder of the academic areas. Each quasi-public program element has its own dedicated exterior entry that is segregated from the central mall. The lecture hall sits at the front of the school and can house the entire JHHS staff for meetings and in-services. It has its own dedicated restrooms and a/v control spaces. The 500 seat theater features a working fly-tower, scenery shop and catwalk system whose unique design allows for performer, technicians and instructors to circulate around the entire venue without returning to the stage floor level.
Academic classrooms and labs are distributed into four focused wings, each with its own staff office, student center, and conferencing spaces. One wing houses the District’s Informational Technology Magnet Program. This wing can also be secured from the rest of the campus so that students from throughout the district can utilize its unique instructional spaces without necessarily mingling with the rest of the student body. The magnet program spaces include a fully functioning TV studio, computer graphics labs and a state-of-the-art Cisco video conferencing center.
Concrete masonry was chosen as the primary construction material due to its excellent thermal mass properties and its unmatched durability in high traffic areas. The district has a long history with masonry construction and the material is readily available from local manufacturing plants thus reducing shipping costs and time. The two-story compact plan reduces the building’s exposure to the harsh inland sun, however, the narrow floor plate and instructional wing configuration allows abundant natural light into every space in the school. The structure’s south facing windows include exterior sun shades while the north facades feature flush insulated glazing.
Acting ahead of the school security curve the District included an access control system in the design. All of the school’s public areas are monitored by a video surveillance system and every door in the school is outfitted with an electronic ‘smart’ lock which keeps a detailed record of access and egress. If needed, the entire campus can be ‘locked down’ with the stroke of a keyboard from the main office.