The John W. Rex Elementary is envisioned as a Boundless Academy that brings the City of Oklahoma City into the school and launches the John W. Rex students, facilitating learning relationships between students, teachers, city leaders, and parents. The entire downtown landscape is the learning environment of this school.
The school is a 500 student PK to sixth grade building. Students are expected to use all of the downtown art, cultural, and business resources that are available to them and as may be required for the learning activities and projects that they engage in with their community faculty. Students are in and out of the building multiple times during the day and community faculty members are also be expected to be coming and going from the building on a regular basis. The exterior of the building is iron-spot brick with punched openings. The northeast corner consists of a two story glass space opening up the school to the City and inviting the City into the school. Color is playfully used on window frames and in curtain wall at this location as a reminder that this is an elementary school.
Placement and location of the punched openings contribute to the playful nature of the building and provide visual interest, especially along Walker and Sheridan Avenue. Along the north elevation of the Gymnasium, large display windows or “viewports”, measuring 6’-9” x 5’6”, are provided to showcase student work either physically or digitally via LED monitors, and to publicize school events and activities. Additionally, windows that open into the gymnasium provide passers-by with a view of the activity taking place inside the building. Transparency of interior use to passersby has been considered and calculated. On overall façade transparency, the west façade is 14%, east façade is 32%, and north façade is 16%.
TAP ARCHITECTURE © 2017
Project: John W. Rex Charter Elementary School
Location: Downtown Oklahoma City
Client: Oklahoma City Public Schools/ MAPS for Kids
Site: Urban Elementary Campus
Date of Completion: August 2014
Budget: $14.25 Million
Construction Cost: $11 Million