Mankato Area Public Schools

Mankato, MN | Education

Overview

The last several years have seen Mankato Area Public Schools (MAPS) making major changes District-wide, including the construction of new schools and renovations to existing buildings.


Opportunity

Mankato Area Public Schools has made significant efforts to improve its facilities. With the need for new facilities and updates to existing ones, the District was proactive in seeking out solutions—many of which were made possible through a successful $69.5 million bond referendum.

Solution

ISG has had the opportunity to work with Mankato Area Public Schools on a number of its recent projects, including the following schools listed below.

Rosa Parks Elementary School
Environmental sustainability was a point of emphasis for the District’s vision of Rosa Parks Elementary School—the design of which met LEED for Schools Gold certification requirements. The school features a ground source heat pump system for heating and cooling, occupancy sensors for lighting, regional and recycled material use, water-saving fixtures and landscaping, and various indoor air quality strategies. The result of these efforts is a facility that minimizes operational and maintenance costs for the District.

The school also includes a state-of-the-art media center with two adjacent computer labs that look overlook the two-story cafeteria. Grade level classrooms are clustered around support areas that include common space for group work, as well as restrooms, storage, and conference rooms.

Prairie Winds Middle School
The District focused on community for the new Prairie Winds Middle School, which serves 1,100 students in sixth through eighth grade. The building was constructed with an open floor plan, with each grade level receiving its own pod to allow for cross-curriculum teaching and to nurture a feeling of belonging among students. This was further reinforced with the inclusion of a large commons area featuring a multi-story atrium. ISG also designed a new gymnasium, complete with a running track, as well as tennis courts and baseball fields. The cafeteria features a single-point entry system for increased student safety and a station for serving healthy foods.

ISG’s designs for Prairie Winds Middle School allowed the school to achieve LEED certification, which had the added benefit of maximizing operational cost efficiency by reducing light pollution and providing water-efficient landscaping. This environmentally friendly design allowed the District to budget for an additional 150-student capacity increase in the facility.

West High School
ISG designed the reconfiguration and renovation of several of West High School’s classrooms and science labs. The renovation also included updates to the HVAC system, improvements to ensure ADA compliance, and an expansion of the cafeteria to become more open and flexible.

Hoover and Monroe Elementary Schools
For both Hoover and Monroe Elementary Schools, ISG designed an expansion to accommodate all-day kindergarten. Each school was outfitted with new classrooms and safe exits that complied with building codes.

Dakota Meadows Middle School
ISG designed an addition to Dakota Meadows Middle School, which included six new classrooms, a learning commons, and flexible learning areas with a movable wall system. Natural lighting and pod configurations provide a lively, open setting for grades six through eight.


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Market News

ALEP Certification Proves Invaluable to Local Schools

January 17, 2019 - Paul Lawton, AIA, LEED, AP, ALEP, ISG Vice President of Architecture, recently became just the fourth Minnesota licensed architect to be certified as an Accredited Learning Environments Planner (ALEP). With additional licenses, specifically for design, throughout the Midwest and directly serving Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, and The Dakotas, Paul not only leads ISG’s Architecture group, but has directly contributed to some of the most impactful referendums and PreK-12 advancements in the Midwest.
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Prairie Winds Middle School Awarded Prestigious LEED Green Building Certification

March 1, 2018 – The U.S. Green Building Council recently welcomed Prairie Winds Middle School to its list of LEED Certified facilities. The LEED program, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the foremost program for buildings, homes and communities that are designed, constructed, maintained, and operated for improved environmental and human health performance.
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