By Aziza Jackson
YUMA, Ariz. — Yuma Union High School District students, staff, and community members recently gathered to celebrate the opening of the Kofa High School campus. DLR Group’s design transforms the once sprawling, unorganized site into a cohesive high school campus serving 2,000 students in grades 9-12.
The $12 million project was funded by a 2015 voter-approved bond passage. Arcadis served as project manager and McCarthy Building Companies served as general contractor.
According to Turner, an international construction services company, the two phases of the Kofa High School renovations project included 177,000 square feet of upgrades to the gymnasium, cafeteria, classrooms, bus and visitor/staff parking areas. Work also included enhancements to campus security and information technology resources.
The new campus features updated academic classrooms and labs with abundant technology, and flexible collaboration areas that allow students to work in small or large groups. The reimagined student hub now encompasses dining, socializing, and student services in a central location. The student hub has a new culinary arts classroom and restaurant providing enhanced dining options for students, educators, and community members. In addition, it also houses the campus bookstore, student-run store, and IT support center.
“The conversion of the original Kofa cafeteria into a new dynamic hub is one of the most dramatic changes in this renovation,” said DLR Group Principal Carmen Wyckoff, AIA. “Our design unifies the campus aesthetically and provides future-ready environments that celebrate academics, athletics, and the whole student experience.”
DLR Group’s design frames an active zone south of the student hub, creating synergies between career and technical education (CTE) courses such as personal training, athletics, nursing, physical education, and health classes. Spaces in the active zone serve dual purposes: the wrestling room is also used for police take-down training, the strength training area is utilized by students enrolled in the physical therapy certification program, and the nursing program shares spaces with the EMT certification program.