KCBA Architects is excited to announce a commission to design a new facility for Tacony Academy Charter School in northeast Philadelphia. Operating in leased space since its founding in 2009, the rapidly growing school currently offers programs in kindergarten through fifth grade as well as ninth grade. The new facility will accommodate 1,075 students in kindergarten through twelfth grade.
The educational program at Tacony Academy is based on the application of the art of invention to promote creative and critical thinking across all academic disciplines. This focus will drive the design of the new building in a number of ways. Science labs and exploration spaces will feature flexible layouts, equipment, and infrastructure. Classrooms will be sized to accommodate a full complement of students as well as small clusters of collaborative independent learners. A centrally located literacy center will be divided into two age-appropriate spaces and include resources and technology to encourage reading and research.
The new school will be constructed on a vacant 12.5 acre parcel situated between I-95 and the Delaware River. This prominent position provides a number of exciting design opportunities. The site will be arranged so that the school building, outdoor program areas, and athletic fields take maximum advantage of the wonderful views afforded by the river. The building’s high visibility from the highway offers the potential to project an eye-catching aesthetic that reflects the school’s progressive program. KCBA’s initial concept for the building features a contemporary mix of architectural forms and construction materials as well as sweeping expanses of glass.
Currently in schematic design, KCBA is working closely with the school administration and project stakeholders in a fast-track project approach.