Everett High School Little Theater

2010 Exhibition of School
Planning and Architecture
Everett High School
Little Theater
Everett, WA
Lee J. Brockway Award - Renovations
DYKEMAN Architects
Everett High School
Little Theater Renovation
Everett High School
Little Theater Renovation
Community Environment
Originally constructed in 1924 as a
church, the Little Theater building was
acquired by the Everett School District as
part of the Everett High School campus
and housed the Drama Department as
well as several classrooms. Through
removal of overgrown landscaping and
cleaning and restoration of the existing
masonry and terra cotta, the spirit of this
historic building was revived.
Community Environment
The community is engaged through the
presence of an integrated display case on
the street side; people who once passed by
without giving much notice now stop to
admire this historic structure. In addition,
the Little Theater is now available for
community use as the school schedule
Learning Environment
The renovation of the Little
Theater provided additional
classroom space as well as an
enhanced venue for the Drama
program. Prior to the remodel,
the basement level consisted
of two large, inefficient
classrooms, Drama storage
space, and inadequate
Three new classrooms were oriented along an accessible central hallway, and each
includes flexible classroom space with a computer area. The efficient layout resulted in
a net add of (1) classroom. In addition, a teacher planning space was created,
independent of the teaching spaces. New accessible restrooms were provided along
this main circulation route, serving the classrooms as well as the Theater.
Learning Environment
The renovation of the Theater
space preserved not only the
Drama program components, but
enhanced a significant assembly
space within the school – when not
in use by the Drama program, the
Theater is used for testing,
lectures, presentations, etc.
Positive results are already being
seen; staff reports enrollment in
the Drama program has doubled
since the renovation.
The renovation vastly improved the user comfort level within the learning environment
as well – new efficient light fixtures were installed to supplement diffused natural light
already provided to the classroom spaces, new HVAC systems resolved uneven
temperature fluctuations and improved air flow, operable windows were installed, and
moisture issues were eliminated.
Physical Environment
There were those who would have
bulldozed this inspiring building in favor of
a new, modern facility; however the historic
character of the building coupled with
budgetary constraints proved to be on her
In order to accommodate the extensive
seismic and system upgrades necessary, the
interior of the building was completely
gutted. A seismic frame was erected within
the existing masonry shell – essentially a
building within a building – including within
the existing bell tower, to accommodate a
new elevator. This was a significant step
towards increasing the life-safety of the
structure. Further, internal ADA access was
improved by eliminating the multiple varied
levels throughout.
Physical Environment
The interior of the Theater space itself was
rotated 90 degrees within the building and
raised seating tiers ascend above the floor
plane along a curved wall, providing a
centrally focused sensory experience and
resulting in improved sight lines as well as
circulation. A Control Room and Band
Mezzanine oversee activity from the upper
level. The result is an intimate and engaging
space, with seating for 146 people.
As a bonus, an additional space was created
adjacent to the Theater, consisting of a
“green” room/queuing space which doubles
as a classroom, and contains an accessible
Physical Environment
Throughout construction, care
was taken to maintain historic
features – masonry was
preserved, stained glass windows
were protected, and existing
decorative trusses and corbels
were carefully disassembled,
stored during construction, and
Externally, reorientation of the main lower level classroom entry and ADA accessible
ramp provide a clear entrance, focused inward toward the campus. In addition, an
area for ticket sales was created off of the raised exterior plaza, where visitors are
guided into the welcoming lobby space adjacent to the Theater.
Sustainable practices were employed through re-use of this unique structure, as well
as the incorporation of high efficiency mechanical and electrical systems, energy
reduction, water conservation, and durable materials.
Today, the Little Theater has a renewed sense of dignity and stands proudly amongst
its peers on this historic campus.
Planning Process
Both District and school staff members
were significantly involved throughout
the design and construction phases.
Educational Specifications were created
based on input from all stakeholders,
and were referred to frequently
throughout the design process. An
enhanced learning environment,
improved building image, safety, and
security were primary goals of the
planning process. The planning began in
November 2007, and the Little Theater
reopened its doors to students for the
first day of school in September 2009.
Basement Floor Plan
First Floor Plan
Second Floor Plan
Project Data
Submitting Firm :
Project Role
Project Contact
City, State or Province, Country
Joint Partner Firm:
Project Role
Project Contact
City, State or Province, Country
Dykeman, Inc.
Master Planning, Programming, Architecture, Interior
Trish Sherman
Project Manager
1716 West Marine View Drive
Everett, WA 98201, USA
Other Firm:
Project Role
Project Contact
City, State or Province, Country
Construction Firm:
Project Role
Project Contact
City, State or Province, Country
Spee West Construction
General Contractor
Kris Weholt
Project Manager
307 Bell Street
Edmonds, WA 98020, USA
Project Details
Project Name
District Name
Occupancy Date
Everett High School Little Theater
Everett School District No. 2
Dr. Gary Cohn, Superintendent
Grades Housed
9 – 12
Site Size (acres)
Gross Area (sq. ft.)
Per Occupant(pupil)
gross/net please indicate
Design and Build?
If yes, Total Cost:
144-classrooms; 146-theater; and 52–band
7.7 acres
12,500 SF
36.5 SF with all typical spaces occupied
If no,
Site Development:
Building Construction:
Fixed Equipment:
Minimal – included in overall construction cost
Supporting Images
Supporting Images