The Norwin School District recently completed construction of Hahntown Elementary School for Kindergarten through 4th grade students. According to project architect, Hank Tkacik, the primary goal of the design rationale was to make it fun for the children to go to school.
As one example, Tkacik points to the school’s colorful 96-foot-long, two-story central corridor. The lower portion features plenty of arches that give the appearance of castle walls, while the upper portion features a ceiling designed to give the appearance of the sky.
To create the “sky,” a series of twelve white “clouds” crafted from FINE FISSURED tegular panels and AXIOM Classic Curved Trim extend from the walls on both sides of the corridor. The clouds measure in radius from 6′to 11′.
Above the clouds, a yellow 4’ x 4’ open cell 360° Painted Grid system represents the rays of the sun, while the bottom of the exposed roof deck is painted light blue to represent the sky above.
The sky motif also carries over into the cafetorium located off the corridor. “The added volume of this space gave us the opportunity to create different levels of clouds,” Tkacik explains. As a result, the design team created a pair of three-tiered cloud systems that step down as they approach outside diagonal corners.
“Acoustical ceilings are sometimes used simply to hide the services in the plenum. But that was definitely not the case here,” Tkacik says. “The ceilings are an integral part of the public spaces and played a large role in the design of those spaces, both from a functional and an aesthetic point of view.”