Thaden School

Bentonville, Arkansas

Thaden School was founded in 2016 as a start-up private school serving grades 7-12 for the NW Arkansas region. The brand-new campus is located in downtown Bentonville on a 26-acre site which was previously a fairground. The school is committed to ensuring that students from all income levels have the opportunity to attend through a comprehensive scholarship program.

The initial project consists of four large structures on the west parcel with parking, playfields, trails, and a bike barn located on the east parcel. The short walk outdoors between classes fosters a sense of community and connection to nature that is not always present on a secondary school campus.

All buildings share a common geothermal wellfield serving variable speed heat pumps within each building. Occupancy controls and energy efficient kitchen strategies, such as the use of induction cooking ranges, will help meet the aggressive energy target. In addition to energy savings, daylight and enhanced IAQ were high priorities for the school. Spatial Daylight Autonomy (SDA) modeling software was used during design to ensure that daylighting goals were met.