VLK Architects Break Ground on Arlington ISD's New Ag Science Center

Arlington, Texas - On April 7th, VLK Architects attended the ground breaking ceremony for Arlington ISD's new Agricultural Science Center. The new center is a product of AISD's approved 2014 bond plan. VLK was selected to design the new $5.9 million facility which is set to open in the Fall of 2017.

"The Agricultural Science Center serves as an extension of the laboratories and classrooms included in the Career and Technical Center." said Sloan Harris, VLK Partner. "The programs that are going to happen here provide exponential opportunity for these students. There's a tremendous amount of flexibility in this center and the programs it can offer to AISD."

The new 28,000 sf Agricultural Science Center will provide not only for AISD high school students that are part of the Ag Science programs, but also for all K-12 students in the district. The center will include two classrooms, one metal fabrication lab, and animal pens to house sheep, goats and cattle. Multiple elements of the building came to fruition during the design charrette, which included students, AISD staff, and school board members. The result was a sustainability program and the potential future expansion of the center to accommodate growth and additional programs.

"Working together with Arlington ISD, one of our main goals when designing the Ag Science Center was to conceptualize a facility that was more than a typical Ag Barn with standard classrooms and support spaces. We wanted this new building to be a learning tool itself and reflect the future of agricultural science," said Erjon Troqe, VLK Project Designer. "You can tell by the design of this facility that sustainability was also an important consideration. The new Ag Science Center will feature photovoltaic panels, a wind turbine, and a rainwater collection system that will serve as irrigation to the surrounding landscape."

"The opportunities that students have in the AISD today are greater than they have ever been," said Dr. Marcelo Cavazos, AISD superintendent. "That's the case because of a community, students, staff, and leadership that are dedicated to making sure we allow and assist students in dreaming big and helping them realize those dreams with tangible experiences."