Palmer Ridge High School

Updated: July 2015


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all rights reserved.

BrainSpaces, Inc.

856 N. Fairfield Avenue, Suite #1

Chicago, IL  60622

Ph:  773.531.3221


Lewis-Palmer School District, Monument, CO

In association with H+L Architecture


Completed in 2008, Palmer Ridge High School’s campus design seeks inspiration from higher education planning and teaching models, enabling collaboration between students and faculty as well as treating the facility as a laboratory and learning tool.  The school’s central spine is designed to maximize the social interaction of all students with lounges, food service points, lobbies, courtyards, and the media center.  The lower level contains public spaces while the upper levels are formed by instructional spaces, the media center and administrative space.  Courtyards and green roofs punctuate the experience along the spine while extending the instructional areas outside.

The high school is planned in a way that allows it to accommodate several teaching models ranging from small learning communities to more conventional grade-based or departmental models.  The instructional areas are organized around “academic crossroads,” a dynamic hub fostering collaboration between students and teachers.  Faculty neighborhoods have been designed to give teachers a permanent location to utilize as their home base and allow sharing of classrooms.  “Front porches” enable the neighborhoods to convey their unique identities through visual displays and digital messaging.

Palmer Ridge High School consists of a multi-level program that steps along with the site; courtyards and green roofs extend interior spaces into the exterior landscape, and every instructional space has access to natural light and views to the outside.  The facility is designed to maximize energy efficiency and system performance.  The estimated savings in operational costs for the District is over $62,000 per year.  Palmer Ridge is the largest geothermal project in the state of Colorado.

The project was recognized by CEFPI as the silver winner of the 2009 MacConnell Award.


1,700 students

Grades 9-12

268,000 sf

Opened, 2008


In association with H+L Architects

The project was recognized by CEFPI as the silver winner of the 2009 MacConnell Award.