How to Transform an Entire School Over Summer Break

Sep 18, 2023

e’re excited to feature West Hills Primary School, a 90,000 square foot, K-8 school located northeast of Pittsburgh in Armstrong School District.

The transformation of West Hills Primary School’s 28 classrooms and 20+ administrative areas began as soon as school let out for the summer and needed to be complete in time for students to return for the upcoming school year – a span of less than three months. Ordinarily this would be impossible using conventional methods.  As it turned out, the solution presented by Construkt/DIRTT was not only faster but it was a healthier and greener choice as well.

This project may have been a quick turnaround, but the wheels started turning long before the last class bell rang in June of 2023. IKM Architecture realized that DIRTT was the key to the project’s success years before it came to fruition.

“Utilizing industrialized, tilt-up interior construction was the only way to complete this project and provide the district with new and flexible interior space within the tight, three-month summer window,” explained Matt Hansen, Principal with IKM Architecture.  

When IKM approached Construkt for the project, we instantly knew that DIRTT could handle the challenge of overhauling an entire school over summer break. DIRTT has the ability to speed up construction timelines by as much as 30% and with the power of DIRTT, we were able to make decisions more quickly. Paired with rapid manufacturing and efficient installation, DIRTT has the perfect formula for a project with a condensed schedule.

Not only does it save the day when you need a quick turnaround, but it is the perfect choice to create a space for students to succeed. Says Benjamin Urban, CEO of DIRTT, "This project demonstrates how DIRTT and our construction partners help educational institutions meet the evolving needs and interests of students and staff, start to finish, over summer break.”

To bring the school back to life, the project team decided to utilize DIRTT’s full product solution - walls, casework, doors, back painted glass, writeable surfaces and more. The versatility and adaptability of DIRTT are a bonus to its unrivaled capacity to meet tight project timelines.

“The seamless integration by one partner to provide, walls, casework, glass and whiteboards for our classrooms and administrative offices was unexpected and provided financial and time saving benefits for us,” remarked Sam Kirk Jr., Armstrong School District administrator. “The new space supports the district’s learning philosophies and creates a safer, more flexible, and significantly better learning environment for our students, teachers, and staff to return to.”  

Leveraging the dynamic interior solutions offered by DIRTT, we successfully revitalized this school into a state-of-the-art, immersive learning environment within their tight timeline.

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