First Look : East Kapolei Middle School is currently on track to be the first CHPS Verified whole campus in the nation.
Architects Ferraro Choi And Associates Ltd. and The Miller Hull Partnership are in the process of designing East Kapolei Middle School, a 212,000 SF highly sustainable school meeting HI-CHPS Verified requirements.
HI-CHPS is an acronym for Hawaii – Collaborative for High Performance Schools, and is a school-focused metric of sustainable design resulting in healthy, comfortable and high performance learning environments. The Department of Education (DOE) adopted the national CHPS rating system in 2012 with modifications to suit Hawaii and the DOE system.
“In comparison to LEED, HI-CHPS is school-centric and focuses on the needs of a high performance learning environment within the context of culture and micro-climate”, says Ferraro Choi Principal, Bill Brooks. “HI-CHPS schools have lower operational costs and contribute to better learning outcomes for students.”
The 18-acre site for East Kapolei Middle School is located between Maunakapu Street and Keahumoa Parkway, close to the planned first station for the Honolulu rail project.
The need for more public schools is evident in one of the fastest-growing communities on Oahu, which boasts one of the largest high schools in the state with 3,125 students, according to the Department of Education.
“Different children learn in different ways, so we need a variety of spaces to support varying learning styles and groups”, says Project Architect, Mark Ayers. “The school’s classrooms are able to be reconfigured easily, either with furniture or moveable displays, to provide for both active and reflective learning.”
Miller Hull Principal, Ruth Baleiko, adds “For students to flourish in learning environments, comfort of all types is absolutely essential. Buildings have been oriented to optimize natural ventilation and building fenestration has been designed to provide solar control. In addition, the architectural expression has been designed specifically to feel modern and welcoming—and provide ease of upkeep over decades of use.”