Powell Elementary School, located along Chicago’s southern shoreline, incorporated a number of sustainable features in the design of its new school including a green roof, native landscaping, permeable paver parking lot, and multiple efficiency measures within the building. Terra was responsible for the site design and engineering and developed a stormwater management plan that exceeded LEED objectives and the sustainable goals outlined for the project. By directing all stormwater to landscape infiltration areas and the aggregate base course of the permeable pavers, the need for a city sewer connection was eliminated as all stormwater infiltrates into the native, sandy sub soils on-site. Terra’s design also increased the site’s accessibility as a number of ADA improvements were implemented including new corner ramps, parking, ramps, and signage. The project won an ACEC-Illinois Merit Award in fall 2011 and is anticipated to receive a LEED Gold rating from the USGBC.


InterActive Design, Architect of Record
Thornton Tomasetti, Structural Engineer
Jacobs Engineering, MEP Engineer
Wolff Landscape Architecture, Landscape Architect
SMNG-A, Design Architect