The design for Owatonna Middle School connects the new with the existing in order to handle a variety of types and sizes of student groups. The addition—housing sixth grade, doubling the cafeteria size, and featuring a flexible performance space—establishes true middle school houses and creates a commons area that opens up the center of the building. The old media center connects to the commons area and emphasizes gatherings and a sense of community, where students find a home for hanging out in the morning before class. Focusing on transparency and collaboration, the design facilitates team learning with resource areas that connect classrooms. The additions also accommodate infrastructure upgrades, including the replacement of mechanical systems, a cooling system addition, and upgraded restrooms, locker rooms, and kitchen to supplement the renovations, revitalizing the building for many years to come.