Reliance Blog

In a perfect world, schools are places where teachers can focus on educating young minds and students can focus on learning, unbothered by external threats or concerns. Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world. The horrific tragedy that took place in Parkland Florida is just the most recent in a long line of terrible events occurring in our schools.  Despite the shocking event and community devastation, students will return to school and hopefully assume their normal routine. This process of returning can be challenging unless the school and community take necessary steps ensuring the school community is safe.  

Late last year, I was interviewed by Construction News Magazine to express my views on changes in the construction industry over the years.  During that interview, I was asked about emerging trends in architecture.  As I reflected on that question, I thought about all the projects we have completed and how they have evolved over the years.   Across Texas, public schools have requested more adaptable and flexible spaces for instructional programming as well as for community use.  The school is no longer just a place for students to learn from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.  It has evolved into much, much more.  In a sense, many communities have endorsed the development of schools as community hubs focusing on social services, health and well-being outcomes for students, as well as benefits to their families and the public.

The decision to renovate or build new is a complex one. There are many ways to analyze the topic based on budgets, finances, student needs and even the emotional connection between the community and the building, all can be equally important. There is no one solution that will be right for everyone, but when you break down the details and make decisions based on what is best for your community, you are off to a good start. To really analyze the nuts and bolts of this issue, you should thoroughly assess the state of your facilities, know what your goals are, have a solid budget, and consider the needs of your community.

In the November Blog, we talked about many of the advantages of multi-story buildings. We looked at factors ranging from shorter travel distances to visual messages a multi-story building can send. For this article, we decided to view multi-story construction through a different lens and explore the reasons our clients choose to avoid multi-story buildings more than 90% of the time.

Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of gravity,
or to engineer against it and by opposing build up?

Finding land to build on is becoming harder to do as land is becoming scarce in many communities and school districts. Communities are developing a growing interest in green spaces and school districts and municipalities are keenly interested in energy efficiency and long-term building maintenance costs.

About Reliance

Reliance Architecture brings Value, Management, Partnership and Convenience to school and public architecture in Central Texas. At Reliance Architecture, we are responsive to the unique needs and values of each of our clients, using our expertise, experience and technology to make the design and building process of more value to our clients while making it simple and easy to navigate.

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13813 Ann Place
Unit A
Austin, Texas 78728


(512) 758-7660


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