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Volcano Vista High School

Volcano Vista High School represented the Albuquerque Public School District’s desire to improve student learning through facility design and improved teaching practices. Using national and self-generated research, the district wanted to organize the new high school in small learning communities of 125 students to improve student peer support, teacher contact and student socialization. These small learning communities further organize in academies that include five discipline-focused academies and a ninth grade academy. These academies are small separate schools within the larger high school and fully programmed to include administration, lockers, food service and technology classrooms.

The different academies organize around a light filled commons space that serves group activities and food service functions. The building’s spine serves to allow interior circulation to shared functions like art and science classrooms, physical education and central administration and parenting offices. The spine also serves to negotiate the site slope over the length of the project campus.

The project site was master planned to function as a comprehensive education center with the district’s K-12 facilities. An adjacent segment of the site was further master planned to function as a community recreation center with dual use sharing agreements with the district.

TSK provided design services as a consultant to SMPC Architects.

Project Facts


Construction Complete

Completion Year



486,206 sf


Albuquerque, New Mexico


Albuquerque Public School District


2010. NAIOP Awards of Excellence, Eagle Award, Education Category

2009. Associated General Contractors, Best Building Award for Projects over $20M

2009. Associated General Contractors, Grand Prize for Best of Show

2009. Southwest Contractor, Top Projects of the Southwest

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