Vancouver School of Arts and Academics

  • LOCATION: Vancouver, WA
  • COMPLETED: Phase 1 2006, Phase II 2008, Courtyard Renovation 2012


Originally built in 1929 as Shumway Junior High School, the building was remodeled in 1996 to create the Vancouver School of Arts and Academics (VSAA).  A school of choice where the arts are immersed in academic study, students who attend have the opportunity to gain experience in visual art, dance, literary art, theatre, moving image arts, and music.

In order to better accommodate the growing program, Vancouver Public Schools scheduled an interior remodel of the school.  Rather than relying on large additions, LSW collaborated with the district to determine how the space they had could be reworked to best serve their needs.  Ultimately, the 65,000 sq. ft. renovation included expanding the cafeteria/commons, dividing the large and small gyms to accommodate multiple programs, and relocating faculty spaces.

In 2012, the PTA gifted a courtyard renovation to the school, transforming the exterior area from simple green space to a gathering, teaching, and performance space with a concrete stage, basalt bench seating, a grassy knoll, and new vegetation.  Although a PTA-driven project, LSW offered creative ideas and constructive advice to help the renovation be a success.  A unique feature of the project allowed seniors to sponsor a basalt bench with a personal message or inspiring quote carved in it.