Projects + Education + Saunders Secondary School, Learning Commons

Saunders Secondary School, Learning Commons

As a pilot project for the Thames Valley District School Board, our firm was asked to transform the existing library at Saunders Secondary School into a new Library Learning Commons (LLC). The vision for the space was to create a central student activity hub for the school. Visual connection and sense of openness were integral considerations for the design. Previously a standard library with several classrooms and offices, the space was transformed into a large learning common with various rooms that incorporated meeting, presentation, maker, and creative spaces. To bring to life the vision of a unique open concept, three perimeter walls located along the school corridors were opened and central rooms of the LLC area were glazed. Exposing the concrete waffle slab ceiling allowed for a higher ceiling height, bringing emphasis to the grandeur of the space. To further customize the user requirements of a collaborative space, low seating tables and chairs were chosen. The furniture is easily moveable and can be reconfigured for optimal flexibility and usage. Collaboration tools such as whiteboards, accessible power sources, and wireless capabilities were incorporated. These additions have made the common area a popular hangout spot for the Saunders S.S students. Due to the success of the renovation and its completion in 2018, the design for Saunders LLC has become the base model for future TVDSB school libraries and learning commons renovations.