Rock Ridge High School in the PCI Focus Newsletter

In 2020, the northern Minnesota communities of Virginia and Eveleth-Gilbert recognized a shared desire to elevate education quality for future generations and took the bold step to consolidate into the new Rock Ridge School District. A new Rock Ridge High School was a product of that collaboration and consolidation.

At the center of school life in the new high school, a multi-story Innovation Commons connects all three building levels, establishing an open, cohesive atmosphere. The design embraces and reflects the region’s geological nature while mimicking the color and texture of the local rock outcroppings. The local community supports not only the school’s amazing educational opportunities, but investment from local industries and businesses also supports three gyms, a community pool, and a performing arts center. The nearly 300,000 square foot structure is a combination of precast walls and floor plank, steel framing, cmu bearing walls, and metal stud infill. Exterior finishes are architectural precast concrete, brick, and metal panels.

Precast was chosen for this project because:

– Precast construction schedules are less impacted by winter weather, so using precast was advantageous to this project because construction was scheduled to start in the late fall / early winter months.
– Long span (102’) double tees were utilized for the pool roof. This was done to eliminate the need for columns/beams to create a more efficient and open space.
– Stadia risers were used to construct the seating for the pool area, simplifying the construction sequencing and improving the schedule for the pool area.
– The classroom wings were constructed with steel columns/beams and hollowcore for the floor structure. This achieved desired head heights, and fire ratings. There are solid precast walls separating the wings that also provide the required fire separation.
– The gym was constructed with architectural insulated walls, and hollowcore was used to support the gym floor. Locker rooms were built beneath the main gym under the hollowcore.

Architect: Cuningham Group
Engineer: Northland Consulting Engineers
Contractor: Kraus-Anderson
Owner: Rock Ridge Public Schools
Precaster: Taracon Precast
Precast Specialty Engineer: Midwest Structure
Engineering
PCI Certified Erector: Wysan Precast Services
Location: Virginia, MN
Year of Completion: 2021

Taracon Precast

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