New Edison Environmental Science Academy, Kalamazoo, MI
The multimillion-dollar replacement of the New Edison Environmental Science Academy, a Kalamazoo Elementary School, stands as a testament to the transformative capabilities of terrazzo in educational architecture. Encompassing 15,000 square feet across two levels, the installation of 4-color epoxy terrazzo was not just a surface-level decision but a comprehensive integration into the school’s infrastructure.
“We don’t want carpet, we want simple and classy and don’t want to overdo it,” said Karen Jackson, Director of Facilities.
This massive undertaking began with the demolition of the old school, which had been built in 1923. The Kalamzoo Public Schools recognized the inherent benefits of terrazzo and embraced this versatile flooring for the new building. The terrazzo application now seamlessly blends practicality with aesthetics, extending through public corridors, the cafeterias, and two poured-in-place stairwells.
The construction of the new Kalamazoo Elementary School evolved into a compelling showcase of terrazzo’s versatility and design potential within educational spaces. Far surpassing its role as a durable and timeless material, terrazzo emerged as a functional and visually captivating solution, intricately woven into the fabric of the school’s architectural identity.
As the terrazzo patterns unfurl, they narrate a story of innovation, durability, and the enduring charm of a material that can seamlessly integrate into the educational experience. It also mirrors the attention to detail required for the sciences, as shown in the fine craftsmanship of the floors and stairs.
- Location: Kalamazoo, MI
- Project Name: Kalamazoo Elementary School - New Edison Environmental Science Academy
- Owner/Client: Kalamazoo Public Schools
- Terrazzo Contractor: Central Tile & Terrazzo Co., Inc.
- General Contractor: The Skillman Corporation, Portage, MI
- Architect: Tower Pinkster, Kalamazoo, MI
- Terrazzo Material Supplier: Terrazzo & Marble Supply Co.
- Divider Strip Supplier: Manhattan American Terrazzo Strip Co.
- Resin Supplier: Sherwin Williams
- Photography: Viken Djaferian