Best K-12 Education: Spring Creek Educational Campus

Built in the heart of a new, 227-acre community of 2,200 affordable homes in Brooklyn, the 154,000-sq-ft, four-story Spring Creek Educational Campus is the largest and tallest structure in the area. It was designed to become a neighborhood landmark yet have only a minimal impact on residential views and natural light.

The $75.7-million project includes two 550-student intermediate/high schools and a school for 100 special needs students. Each school is on a different floor, with public spaces on the first floor shared by all students and the community. The project also includes an entrance plaza designed for gatherings.

The school was built on a former marsh that did not provide the necessary bearing capacity due to loose sand and silt. To improve soil-bearing capacity, the team used vibro-replacement, which involved placing 1,554 crushed stone columns 50 ft deep throughout the site.

It was the first time the technique, which one Best Project judge described as "an innovative way to meet the challenge," was used on a New York City public building. Compared with pilings, the crushed stone columns were easier to install and resulted in client cost savings of more than $1 million.

The school embraces the city's Green Schools Program by maximizing natural light in all teaching, circulation and public spaces. The exterior was created with a combination of materials, 10% of which are made from recycled content; including precast curtain walls, brick and metal bands.

Spring Creek also includes two large roof spaces available for future use as a green roof or for renewable energy equipment. The project meets LEED requirements for energy conservation and for low-emitting materials.

Spring Creek Educational Campus, Brooklyn

Key Players

Owner New York City School Construction Authority

General Contractor Plaza Construction

Lead Designer/Structural, Civil and MEP Engineer STV

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