african american academy | seattle public schools

african american academy  |  seattle public schools

This new 3-story K-8 school in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood accommodates 650 students in 100,000 square feet of teaching, support and community-oriented spaces.

The programming goal was to create an inclusive new school celebrating African heritage and involve the surrounding multi-ethnic community. The building’s colors and forms refer to Afro-centric cultural design concepts. The library is in a segmented turret, an interpretation of typical building forms in African Dogon villages. Windows on all sides of the turret let in natural light, making the library warm and inviting. The dramatic design emphasizes the importance of scholarship and academic achievement.

The lower level includes a cafeteria, full production kitchen, lecture hall, stage, music room, and multi-purpose room. Classrooms for kindergarten through fifth grade, a childcare center and administrative offices are on the entry level. The library and gymnasium are available for after-hours use by the community.