Kellam High School

In 2008, HBA was contracted to plan and design a replacement high school facility for one of the oldest high schools in Virginia Beach, Kellam High School. From the beginning, this new 2,000 student school was envisioned as a prototype for 21st century learning. We established four clear objectives that would define success for this project and guide the Owner, the users of the facility, the planning and design team, and other stakeholders toward achievement of a truly remarkable educational facility.

The new Kellam High School was designed as a “tool” for the delivery of problem- and project-based learning. It is an educational facility that has truly been designed from the inside out, planned to support and facilitate a new challenge-based learning curriculum focused on engaging students in their own learning, and collaboratively designed by the stakeholders who will benefit from its realization. The unique planning strategies and processes that the educational planning team designed and facilitated have created learning environments that directly respond to the needs of specific learning activities and learning styles, and these strategies and processes will serve as the model for how we go about planning and designing schools for the future.

In a sense, you could say that we have engaged the entire community in challenge-based learning opportunities that foster the acquisition of 21st century skills.

Award of Distinction, Top 5 New Schools in the World

Association for Learning Environments (A4LE)

Best Secondary School Design

Southeast Region of Certified Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI)

Gold Design Award

Virginia Department of Education & CEFPI

Silver Design Award

Virginia School Board Association

Merit Award

AIA Hampton Roads Chapter

Best Educational Building

HRACRE Excellence in Development Design
Award of Excellence

Client: Virginia Beach City Public Schools

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

New Construction : 336,410 SF


Civil Engineer: Kimley-Horn and Associates

Landscape Architect: WPL Site Design

Structural Engineer: Speight, Marshall & Francis, P.C.

PME Engineer: Thompson Consulting Engineers

Contractor: S.B. Ballard Construction Company