Coolidge Sr. High School has received LEED Gold certification by the USGBC. Sustainable features of the school include energy efficient mechanical systems and windows, improved access to natural daylight, increased insulation, a green roof on the addition, LED lighting throughout, low VOC materials and finishes, and an extensive stormwater management system. During construction, demolition materials were carefully sorted and recycled off site.
A new site-specific entry garden replaces and pays homage to a legacy garden that was displaced by the construction of the middle school addition. The radiating garden was designed and installed in 2010 in partnership with the Coolidge Alumni Society and the ACE mentoring program. Existing hardscape materials including concrete retaining wall blocks, permeable pavers, and a metal arbor structure were stockpiled and recycled in the new garden and in other locations on site. Existing site furnishings were transferred to other schools, and community members were invited to dig up the existing plantings.
For the new landscape, the regenerative site design includes plants for local pollinators: birds, bees, and butterflies; supporting the local ecology and that of the general urban environment. Site work also includes site water collection and infiltration via both permeable paving and four raingardens/ infiltration ponds, helping to replenish the water table for availability to site plantings. All plantings are native and adaptive drought-tolerant species and cultivars that will withstand site conditions without requiring irrigation or added fertilization.