Maple River Schools

Mapleton, MN | Education


To address outdated facilities in multiple locations, ISG performed a facilities assessment, leading to planning and design work for the Maple River School District, offering a framework that led to community consensus for a new PreK-12 facility.


The facilities assessment uncovered that the two facilities existing prior to this renovation could not adequately support client needs, as they were outdated and far apart for the district’s projected growth, in desperate need of updating to meet building standards, and could not offer resources needed to provide students with a high-quality education. The district was left with two decisions: to modify their existing facilities to meet their needs or build an entire new structure that was tailored to their needs and would support future growth.


The assessment included an analysis of each building and site, including accessibility and life safety items. Building systems and component reviews included exterior and interior architectural and structural conditions, as well as mechanical, plumbing, technology, and electrical system conditions. The decision was made to invest in an entirely new structure, in one central location, that would support the District’s needs.

Given that this would be a completely new structure, ISG designers tapered the District’s needs around nearly every function of the multiple outdated facilities, while also filling in gaps. The newly constructed facility would need to seamlessly blend the District’s needs of academic, athletic, and extracurricular spaces. While this facility will house all students in the community, this facility is still able to successfully section elementary, middle, and high school into their own respective areas.

The facility’s structure is sectioned into of three zones to accordingly accommodate elementary, middle, and high school grades united with a common area. The elementary wing is joined to the middle-high school wing by a common area. In this common area, the two wings share an entrance, common spaces, cafeteria, music sites, and gym. Maple River’s varsity gym is designed to have two designated areas above the gym for spectator seating and as a corridor to the gym itself. In the gym area, use of Kalwall panels for lighting provide ample lighting throughout the gym, without creating hot spots on the floor below.

On the building’s exterior, bus lanes have a drop-off lane completely separate area towards the rear of the school, while the front would provide room for parents to drop off children in the building’s front. Ample parking is provided for students and faculty with proper drainage into two stormwater ponds. One pond will act as both a stormwater basin for drainage as well as provide opportunity for curriculum for students with interest in wildlife. The pond will be deeper than the other drainage basin in order to prevent freeze over.

As the flagship building for the entire Maple River School District, facility branding for this structure has to match the strong spirit of the students within. On the school’s exterior, a 25-foot-wide sign displaying the school’s eagle will be displayed proudly in the front. With accent colors matching the school spirit inside, exterior glass is featured in green and blue, with green metal paneling to tie the colors together. Interior signage, for both wayfinding and room numbers, is branded in the school colors of green, blue, and gold. The school logo is displayed proudly almost everywhere in the school’s interior, with interior an interior paint embossed in school colors.

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