During the rapidly increasing population of the Las Vegas area, the need arose for additional facilities of secondary education. Following a series of workshops with the Clark County School District, it was determined that this should be accomplished in the form of new career and technical academies. Once a list of several vocations had been compiled, a “components list” of environmentally responsive academic buildings was created. With this list, a new campus could be designed whenever the need presented itself. Buildings could be selected based on the specialization desired at that location. Schools would be able to choose vocations according to current industry trends and could be assembled in any number of different groupings. The individual component buildings would allow the new campus to respond impeccably to any given site—creating versatility within the design and contextualizing the buildings without heavily altering the surrounding environment. The layout of component academy parts is conducive to creating a great sense of community among the students, and because the design treats the academic atmosphere similar to that of higher education, a greater sense of excitement and professionalism is achieved through a campus arrangement.
The Career and Technical Academy exemplifies the “10 Principles for Livable Communities,” by demonstrating several of the ideals set forth by the AIA Communities by Design. In the compilation of different and individual vocational academies, choices can be made for a multiplicity of site configurations, based on the current needs of the district. Individual academic buildings may be chosen to supplement or replace existing educational facilities.