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And It’s Montessori!

historic entry to black riverIt’s an exciting time when a school knows they can retire the portable classrooms for a real school. Black River Elementary will have ground breaking this month on their new facility that will be on the campus with their middle school, high school and Lyceum building in Holland MI.

Returning customer, Barb Ellis (Spin Dance), is the current president of their board and suggested to their group that r.o.i. Design should be included in their design build team of Robert Doornbos, RMD Architects, and Lakewood Construction.

Our challenge was to provide value through creativity and leadership, without adding cost.  Some of the ways we added value:

  • Exterior Study of New Black River SchoolProviding counsel and visuals to help them understand classroom sizes and capacity so teachers and administrators could plan more confidently.
  • Challenging their ideas for the exterior and saving dollars by eliminating the cost of a brick mold for the concrete building panels. Instead, we created interest by using two concrete stain colors and V grooves.
  • Creating color coded classrooms by grade, allowing there to be a variety of finishes within the school but not every classroom being different.
  • Providing an accent stripe in the classroom carpets to create a clear line for students to “line up”.
  • Providing bands of wall color in the corridor to create a background for Montessori teaching method quotes.
  • cranes-orchardDesigning a community table for the teachers’ break room that is being donated by a parent.
  • Offering some ideas for “iconic” furniture for the classrooms; items that are unique and promote using a part of the classroom differently, creating “other” spaces.