SAN DIEGO–During the annual Orchids and Onions award ceremony hosted by the San Diego Architectural Foundation, Patrick Henry High School’s eye catching new facility was awarded an Orchid for outstanding architecture.
Designed by PJHM Architects, the state-of-the-art facility features a 500-seat performing arts center and a College, Career and Technical Education (CCTE) Production Studios program space, which wraps around half of the theater. The project also includes an enclosed lobby area, ticket booth, student store and parking lot expansion. Influenced by the surrounding area, the design of the facility used heavy timbers, open glass and the colors and textures of the environment around it. The new theatre includes a 45-foot-high fly loft, a 20- foot-high proscenium and an orchestra pit.
More than just great architecture, the award-winning facility is providing crucial infrastructure for regional growth in the arts. The theater and production studio can fully support musical and theatrical events and holds the capacity to support the entire production process, from set and costume design spaces, to lighting and audio workshops, to digital fabrication and woodshop production areas.
“I am so excited for this award and the beautiful architecture this facility brings to the community, but I am way more excited for what this facility is doing for students,” said school board Vice President Kevin Beiser. “This facility directly supports and enhances the district’s visual and performing arts program and should speak volumes about the district’s commitment to the arts. I can’t wait to see what these students accomplish.”
With specialized workshop spaces and through joint-use agreements with local theater and orchestra groups, students are given the opportunity to pursue a career pathways in fabrication design, audio visual technology, and model and mixed media while having direct access to professional performances. The CCTE Production Studios program provides education in two career pathways within the arts, media and entertainment industry sector: media and design arts, as well as production and managerial arts.
“San Diego Unified believes in the ability of the arts to transform lives, and this building is evidence of that commitment,” said Superintendent Cindy Marten. “This beautiful building is more than bricks and mortar. It is physical proof of the way the arts can create transformational change in the lives of our students, their school and our community.”
The projects are funded by San Diego Unified School District’s Propositions S and Z, which are local bond measures approved by San Diego voters to repair, renovate and revitalize neighborhood schools. In addition to renovation and replacement, bond projects include classroom technology, facilities to support College, Career and Technical Education, classroom air conditioning, safety and security upgrades, and other facilities improvements at traditional and public charter schools throughout San Diego Unified.
Prop. S is a capital facilities program that is funded by a $2.1 billion general obligation bond measure passed November 4, 2008. Prop. Z is a capital facilities program funded by a $2.8 billion general obligation bond measure passed November 6, 2012. By law, the funds cannot be used for teachers’ or school administrators’ salaries, nor can they be used for maintenance or operations.