Completed in the fall of 2014, Pasadena Independent School District’s new Dr. Kirk Lewis Career & Technical High School (CTHS) features innovative learning academies, which include technology, transportation, health, food service, construction, business, agricultural and career guidance. To brand the school’s multiple academy locations, spark enthusiasm for learning, generate school pride and provide a sense of wayfinding, IBI Group Inc. brightened the school’s corridors with bright, bold, relevant and innovative graphics that immediately became a popular backdrop for student selfies and student and school social media.
The design team wanted the hallways of the 248,000 square-foot, two-story CTHS to be inspirational, timeless and “cool.” At the same time, durability was essential. School corridors are high-traffic areas with walls that take abuse from everything from backpacks to shoes. These corridor walls had to be easily cleaned, low to no maintenance, long lasting and durable. These criteria could not be met by traditional protective wall covering products.
Acrovyn by Design® provided interior designers Sylvia Hajo, IIDA, RID, LEED AP, ID+C and Rutu Sathia, LEED AP ID+C of IBI Group Inc., with the unlimited visual freedom they needed for a custom aesthetic. “With Acrovyn by Design’s endless possibilities, we were able to bring our digital visions to life to add excitement in the corridors of the school,” said Sathia. The designs incorporated high-resolution digital imagery of Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein and others into the public corridors. Each image was relevant to the academy it was branding and made wayfinding easier given the school’s large footprint.
“As soon as The Kip Company showed us the new product,” said Hajo, “we knew where and how we were going to use it. Early in the design process we had vinyl wall covering as the product and we were going to use it sparingly. This product removed the boundaries; because of its inherent durability we were able to design full-size floor to ceiling graphics, which changed the overall feel of the school. These graphics opened up the spaces
and gave life to the public areas.” With an expert installation by J.M. Maly, Inc., the transformation was complete.
“The hallways of our school get an A+ for design, function and durability,” said Steven Fleming, Principal of CTHS. “They motivate and energize students even before they get into the classroom. School officials can rest easy knowing that our custom walls can stand the test of time of high school wear and tear.”