ADM Group, Inc., the Southwest’s premier, locally-owned architecture, design and project management firm, joined with the Tolleson Union High School District (TUHSD) to announce the opening of West Point High School (WPHS), located at Avondale and Encanto Boulevards in the West Valley.
With 310,000 square feet and a budget of $108 million, West Point is among the largest high school projects ever undertaken in Arizona and is testament to the robust growth in the West Valley. The new school was dedicated today and will open to incoming freshmen and sophomores on July 31. As new freshmen classes join over the next two years, the school will ultimately serve 3,000 students.
ADM Group Principal Ben Barcon said, “What truly makes this energy-efficient campus remarkable is its innovative and forward-thinking approach to the educational environment. Its optimistic design places a priority on supporting the way today’s students think, study and perform.”
From the moment you arrive at WPHS, you’re struck by the ‘wing’ design echoed throughout the campus. It’s evidence of the deep collaboration between West Point and Luke Air Force Base. In addition to ROTC, classes will emphasize leadership skills, community service, critical thinking and a rigorous program of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) education.
The Innovation Center, located at the heart of the campus, is another important example of what makes this school so different. Designed as a response to seismic shifts in the way students use libraries, the two-story open space includes a multi-media environment with a video wall and stage to support student presentations. A common area offers seating for group and individual study, along with ‘collaboration rooms’ and a ‘maker’s lab’ for student projects. WPHS students will also have space for career and technical education, participate in visual arts classes and create just about any science experiment they can imagine.
The emphasis on imagination and innovation extends beyond the instructional areas. The campus was built with three layers of security, the most important of which is the ability of administrators and teachers to have clear views of student activity from locations throughout campus. Consistent with the ‘secure but open’ concept, the outdoor Quad will have multiple, Wi-Fi supported, shaded gathering areas for study and building a sense of community. Rather than a typical cafeteria, the student dining area is designed to be more like a university’s Memorial Union – equipped with café style seating (tables, booths and high-tops) and winged acoustical panels to mitigate noise.
TUHSD Superintendent Nora Gutierrez expressed her gratitude for her relationship with ADM Group throughout the design and construction process. “ADM is a fabulous architecture firm – they listened to our needs and wants, presented a vision we were excited about, and were there to serve every step along the way. ADM has executed our motto, “Do it With Pride!”
Work on the project has been intense. During the design process, ADM Group generated 800 pages of architectural drawings in just 90-days. Ground was broken for Phase I in September 2018 with construction completed in time for Fall 2019 classes to begin. Construction on Phase II, which includes varsity sports fields, a science wing, fine arts classroom and a performing arts center, has begun ahead of schedule and is expected to be complete in Spring 2020. Chasse Building Team was ADM Group’s construction partner on West Point. The project was funded with a combination of voter-approved bonds and state backing provided through the School Facilities Board.
The West Point High School Dragons will sport school colors of red and black.