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Dyer-Kelly wins two awards from Design-Build industry

Dyer-kelly photos and award The design and construction of Dyer-Kelly Elementary School has been honored with an Award of Distinction and the Design Excellence Award from the Design-Build Institute of America.

One of three brand new elementary school projects in the Arden-Arcade area of San Juan Unified, Dyer-Kelly is the first two-story elementary campus in the district and serves a diverse community.

Assistant Superintendent of Facilities Services Frank Camarda said the Design-Build delivery method, and the team of Lionakis and Clark/Sullivan brought the best value per square foot to the project for taxpayers along with an innovative design.

The two DBIA awards are not the first major recognition for the Dyer-Kelly campus.

The architectural design was recognized as one of the best in California by the Coalition of Adequate School Housing earlier this year.

Lionakis architects were issued a Leroy F. Greene Design & Planning Award of Merit for the out-of-the-box design that was necessary to make a transformative change in its Arden-Arcade neighborhood – focusing on the community’s diversity. 

“Lionakis is so proud to have been a part of the Dyer Kelly campus,” said Lionakis Principal Architect Laura Knauss after winning the CASH award. .“The partnership with the San Juan Unified, Clark/Sullivan (construction) as well as a very deserving community was rewarding. We hope this campus serves them well for generations.”

Dyer-Kelly serves one of San Juan Unified’s most diverse neighborhoods with a high refugee population, and where 96 percent of students receive free or reduced lunch. The school serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner every school day, and conducts food drives to help families during long breaks. 

The two-story campus has a single point of entry into a lobby and an indoor amphitheater that branches into classroom wings that are decorated in themes representing a different continent. There are collaborative working spaces and extra resource rooms for counselors and family liaisons. 

“Schools really have the potential to lift a community,” Principal Gianfranco Tornatore said. “And when you speak to our students, our families and our staff you really get a sense for how excited everybody really is for this new school.”