Since the approval of the $110 bond referendum, OPN Architects has been busy developing the future of Ames High. Construction is anticipated to begin in Spring 2019. The project will be complete and open for classes in August 2022.

PROGRAMMING PHASE The purpose of programming is to listen, observe, dialog, assess, and summarize. It involves research, gathering data, and recording thoughts and ideas from all the project’s stakeholders. The goal of programming is to develop a vision and plan that will serve as the basis of design for the new Ames High School.

Since April, OPN has held 44 benchmarking sessions with a variety of stakeholders and the feedback received during this time set the guiding principles for the design moving forward. These groups participated in a dot exercise and were asked what they believe a school should be.

When considering the layout of the next Ames High, OPN is taking into consideration how traffic will circulate in this area, how the wind flows, topography, local green space and amenities such as the prairie and stadium, as well as the views of the building, both inward and outward as they design the new building.


The purpose of schematic design is to determine how the building will fit on a particular site, assess how much it will cost, and provide a rough idea of what a building will look like. Here is the first look of where it will be located on our current campus.

The south side of the building will have the main parking and athletic wing. This is a great location for these two areas for a couple of reasons. First, the topography of that area drops about 20 feet, allowing for a Ground 0 walk-out section that can be utilized with locker rooms. Secondly, it allows for convenient parking for after school events. Whether it’s athletic events, or other after school activities, this parking lot leads right into the main entrance to the school.
Once through the secure vestibule, the main entrance to Ames High is into the commons with administrative offices to the east, the competition basketball court to the south, and the auditorium to the north. That commons area will be a hub of student activity, and a great location for pre-function events.
Moving along the west side of the building, the academic classrooms are organized in pods, with faculty space built into those areas. It was important that the classrooms had the best view of amenities for our students, which included both the prairie and and stadium to the west. The academic wing will be two stories stacked, and will be anchored by the media center on the second floor. As the academic hub for students, the media center will overlook the commons.

The north part of the building will include space for career and technical education classes, including woods, metals, family consumer science, and business classes. The middle of the building is dedicated to music and fine arts, which is also located adjacent to the auditorium.

AMES HIGH 5 is set to open in the Fall of 2022.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.