THE NEW CHIEF CROWFOOT SCHOOL, LOCATED APPROXIMATELY 85 KILOMETRES SOUTHEAST OF CALGARY, PROVIDES A NEW AND IMPROVED LEARNING ENVIRONMENT FOR STUDENTS OF SIKSIKA NATION.
Gibbs Gage Architects
3,319 m² (35,725 ft²)
Structural Engineering Consultant
The Siksika Nation is Canada’s second largest reserve in land mass and has a population of approximately 3,500 people. The new 35,725 square foot Crowfoot School will accommodate approximately 300 students from kindergarten through Grade 6.
The new school will include classrooms, multipurpose space, ancillary space, computer lab, a gymnasium, library, cafeteria, and support space. The facility will be designed to meet the current program and cultural needs while ensuring enough flexibility to accommodate future plans for expansion.
Challenge: The soils on the site were found to be moisture sensitive expansive clays.
Solution: A building constructed on expansive clays without special consideration will heave up and down, resulting in damage to the structure and finishes. For the school, Entuitive developed a structural design where the structure incorporated deep foundations and the main floor slab on grade was designed to be a suspended slab, allowing the ground to move below the building without adversely affecting the structure. In effect, the building “floats” above the ground.