NPS releases updated OAA renderings, floor plans

May 12—Norman Public Schools has released new renderings and floor plans for the Oklahoma Aviation Academy.

The first renderings were released amid the Feb. 14, 2023 NPS bond, which allocated $354 million for different construction projects throughout the district.

Early estimates earmarked $32 million for the construction of a new facility for the OAA at Max Westheimer Airport.

"Many of you may recall seeing those from the conceptual rendering as we presented it during the bond presentations," said Justin Milner, NPS chief operating officer. "Our next phase will be design, development, and construction documents before we go to bid."

Gary Armbruster, architect for MA+ Architecture, said the new renderings represent the culmination of years of work.

"Through a lot of efforts, a lot of meetings with numerous stakeholders, teachers, principals, OAA board members and many others, we were able to get everything into the blue space [or the main building]," Armbruster said. "We've got actually a lot of space to build in the future on this site, which is great news as this project expands."

Armbruster separated the campus into three areas: the main building, depicted in blue; the College and Careers Center, depicted in red; and future development, depicted in white.

The main building will include two stories. The first floor will have a multipurpose room, cafeteria, coffee shop and convenience store, kitchen, tango flight computer lab, tango 1 stage, three science classrooms, a science lab, a science prep and storage room, a pre-engineering room with storage, and a civil air patrol room, among other rooms.

The second floor will have four aviation rooms with storage, a collaboration area, a STEAM lab, two rooms for flight simulators, nine classrooms, an open study area, and offices.

The College and Career Center will include faculty and staff spaces, as well as four classrooms and a study room.

Referring to the main building, Armbruster said the plan is to create a large vestibule, or entryway.

"Right in the center you'll see a main entry. We've got a secure entry vestibule as we enter the building. You'll enter the office spaces all the way down on that far right side, then if you go back to the main lobby and enter, there's two conference rooms on either side," Armbruster said. "And that's purposeful because this space was designed with flexibility and collaboration in mind. So as soon as you walk into the space, you'll see a lot of activity going on."

He said a spacious vestibule is necessary for flight school so students will have an indoor space for simulated flight activity.

"You'll see kids flying flight simulators. You'll see the learning stair as we enter the center of the facility. So there's going to be a lot of activity that you see, as you tour the facility," he said.

He said classrooms are designed to teach all core classes, like English and history, as students will be required to spend half of their school day at the OAA.

"We've got a storm shelter. It's two stories tall as part of this. One of the things I want to mention is going to have full capabilities for ICC 500 Storm Shelter for the students that will be here on this site," he said.

The student capacity of the building is 600, and currently, between 160-170 students are enrolled, according to NPS Superintendent Nick Migliorino.

"This is in line with our forecast, pushing 700 students within the first four years," Migliorino said.

Currently, the OAA only has a freshman class, as it is the first year that it has been opened for learning. Armbruster said the plan is to accept about 150 students per grade level.

Brian King covers education and politics for The Transcript. Reach him at