Patrick Henry Project Advisory Group Recommends Site Design

The Patrick Henry Advisory Group selected a final site plan on Wednesday evening to present to the School Board as their recommended design option.

The site plan, labeled as option C-1 by the Design review Team, includes emergency access only off North Latham Street. The academic wing of the building, as shown in the recommended option, will be on two floors and run parallel to North Latham Street. The bus loop will be separate from the parking lot, in line with industry best practices and recommendations to maximize safety. Entrances for both the parking lot and the bus loop will come off Taney Avenue, although the entrances will need to be a considerable distance apart to ensure the safety of pedestrians and cyclists. In the recommended option, sidewalks along both Taney Avenue and North Latham Street will be twelve feet wide.

The recommended option complies with all except one of the nine of the recommendations made by the Patrick Henry Advisory Group at their previous meeting. The group had asked the architect to explore possibilities for future expansion of the building, ensure distinct identities for the school and recreation center, create a shared access point to the recreation center and school parking, evaluate safe site access, maintain separate entrances for buses and cars, maximize the green space and avoid the need for swing space. In order to fulfill these recommendations Moseley Architects P.C. had to increase the height on the building adjacent to North Latham Street, which was the one recommendation that could not be accommodated in this design.

The recommended site plan will be presented to the community for feedback next Wednesday, May 4 at the Community Meeting at Patrick Henry Elementary School at 6:30 p.m.

On Thursday, May 5, it will be presented to the School Board for their feedback. The recommended site plan will also go through a process in the City to check that it fulfills all the safety and permitting requirements.

The Patrick Henry Advisory Group was asked to consider two options before selecting one as their final recommendation. There was no consensus among the group over the final selection, although the majority of the Advisory Group recommended option C-1.

The group, which includes School Board Vice Chair Chris Lewis, City Council Member Del Pepper, and Planning Commission Member Stephen Koenig, also asked the architect to conduct an impact study to see if it would be possible to add an auditorium. This will include additional costs related to the additional space, possible locations within the building, and the impact on the recreation center of a loss of learning space as an auditorium would have to replace the currently proposed black box theater.

Watch the video of the Patrick Henry Advisory Group session last Wednesday.

Submit your comments on the option recommended by the Patrick Henry Advisory Group.

All School Board meetings and work sessions, as well as Advisory Group meetings and Community Meetings are open to the public.

ACPS, Patrick Henry