Thurston Elementary School

Owner: Springfield School District
Scope: 55,000 SF
“Thurston is a beautiful, welcoming, responsible, sustainable, contextual place for children to learn and grow. This project truly embodies a world class standard for design of elementary schools.”
- Jury comments
2010 AASA/AIA/CEFPI Architectural Awards

The gentle, sloping silhouette of this school’s two-story classroom wings mirror the McKenzie River valley’s tree-lined hills to the south and north of the site. Large sheets of exposed, tilt-up concrete create a structural rhythm that expresses the scale of these hills and grounds the building to this place. Inside, classroom wings are connected by one-story public zones with low rooflines that embrace the K-5 population. Large wood-framed glass walls bring light and views from the outdoors deep into these transparent connectors, which house the entry, library and commons. Rich woodwork reflects the historic importance of the Springfield timber industry, and showcases local craftsmanship.