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Paradox Valley School

Paradox, Colorado

"From their first visit, through meetings with the community and initial floor plans, it was obvious they were listening to everyone and incorporating that in to what became our final plan.”

Jon Orris, Executive Director/Principal, Paradox Valley School


Connecting through experience of place.

In 2010, RTA was commissioned to provide master planning and conceptual design services in support of a BEST Grant Application for the Paradox Valley School. This arts-focused charter school located in the West End School District serves 50 to 60 children in the remote community of Paradox, Colorado.


Ever curious. Ever learning. Ever improving.

RTA spent several days in the community learning about this unique school and its culture of Performing-Arts-based education. With the design committee, RTA explored a number of diverse options to address the major facility and programmatic deficiencies that existed. With detailed knowledge of the school, the community, and the existing facilities, RTA was able to propose a creative solution that enhances the educational environment, and addresses key facility needs while satisfying the need for an economical solution.


Purposeful, engaging solutions.

The changes made to the school included removing the existing unsafe gymnasium and replacing it with a new energy-efficient LEED Certified building that houses a multi-purpose gym, auditorium, and cafeteria, as well as a music room, stage, and kitchen. A new building addition on the east side of the school incorporates a new library and an access-controlled building entry and office. The renovation of the existing building allowed for two new classrooms, four educational breakout rooms, an art and science area, and a teacher workroom.

With the assistance of RTA, Paradox Valley School was successful in their BEST Grant Application and received the requested grant.  

Project Details

  • Square footage: 14,319 sf
  • Project cost: $2.2M

Design Details

  • Secure main entry
  • Small group areas
  • High performance sustainable design
  • Energy efficient mechanical systems
  • Collaborative design committee
  • BEST Grant assistance


  • LEED Certified design