Saint Peter High School Courtyard

Saint Peter High School Courtyard

St. Peter, MN

A primary District project funded by the successfully passed $58.3 million Saint Peter referendum was construction of the City’s new High School. While planning for this facility, special attention was given to the development of the outdoor courtyard. The design of the courtyard was treated as its own, smaller project to further establish a sense of community and belonging in and out of the school.

Through a series of visioning and review meetings with District staff, functionality was identified as a vital objective for the project design. While the courtyard would act primarily as an extension of the cafeteria and serve students and faculty, it would also serve the larger Saint Peter community as a multi-use space. The result was an open design to accommodate a variety of curriculum including art, science, and general studying, in addition to community events such as craft fairs and luncheons.

Nestled in the heart of the school, the courtyard is surrounded by the facility on three of its four sides, and the fourth leads out to the soccer fields and proposed site of a football and track stadium. The grand lawn features a sloped layout ideal for large gatherings, lawn games, performances, and even food trucks. Offering the possibility of outdoor learning and presentations, a portion of the space is designated to a reading garden and a large and small classroom with amphitheater style seating. Plans also included a learning garden that can be used by culinary or science classes to incorporate into classes for a hands-on experience. With a water and fire feature, rolling berms, tree bosque, and hammock shade garden, the courtyard welcomes visitors with a natural aesthetic, and provides multiple places for people to relax, gather, and enjoy the space.