This new middle school had the unique challenge of being designed and constructed adjacent to the existing Farquhar Middle School, which allowed the school to remain in operation during construction. Serving grades 6-8, the new 3-story facility was certified LEED Silver under the Schools v3 rating system, with geothermal heating and cooling, a green roof, daylight harvesting, rainwater collection, and porous paving.
The design is sympathetic to the rural characteristics of the community. Community use of the cafeteria, media center and gymnasium is also being accommodated to encourage connection with the neighborhood. The site contains new athletic fields, a 120-space parking lot, parent drop-off loop, bus loop, tennis courts and basketball courts.
The design was optimized to support the mission of the County’s Rustic Roads Program to preserve exceptional rustic roads exemplifying the rural and agricultural character of the area. William H. Farquhar Middle School made the land the key sustainable feature – the building nestles, steps, and bridges into and along the contours of the site’s existing slopes. Rains are naturally slowed and treated on site with bioretention facilities and the wet, clay soils are redeemed as a conductive heating and cooling source in the school’s geothermal system. There are vegetated roofs, outdoor learning courtyards and commons, and vistas celebrating the building’s relationship with the surrounding, natural landscape.