Monolithic Dome safe room used nearly every day for performing arts

Lumberton Performing Arts Center in Lumberton, Texas.

In Lumberton, Texas a Monolithic Dome safe room was constructed for the school district and community. However, the community doesn’t call it a safe room. They call it the Lumberton Performing Arts Center. It houses a full stage for plays and all types of performances. The seating retracts to open the floor for Senior prom or a business Expo.

A Timely Message To All

The Avalon School Multipurpose Center is now more than ten years old. It has survived much use by hundreds of students and community residents. It has also served as a tornado shelter sever times. One such tornado caused significant damage to other parts of the school and neighborhood. But those in the Monolithic Dome remained totally safe.
  See: http://www.monolithic.com/stories/feature-school-avalon-highschool

Recently, the superintendent of the Avalon School District was asked if they planned to let school out because tornadoes were bouncing around the area. He said, “No. My children have no homes that they can go to that are as safe as our school. What I am doing is inviting the parents to come here and be with their children in a safe place.”

Locust Grove, Oklahoma: Sold on Monolithic Domes

Locust Grove, Oklahoma is a small community with just 1,200 residents. But in 2007, they passed a bond to add Monolithic Domes to their campus.

Locust Grove, Oklahoma may not be big and it may not be famous and it may not be wealthy, but it is wise. In 2007, this community of just 1200 residents passed a bond to build an arena for its high school. On the advice of School Superintendent David Cash, they went Monolithic.

Spur, Texas: Highlighting Its Domes

Students, school personnel and the community are pleased with their three new domes, designed by Leland A. Gray Architects of Salt Lake City.

Just another small, rural Texas town? Not really! Spur may be small and in a rural area that’s about 60 miles east of Lubbock, but its 1,088 residents take pride in its history and accomplishments.

Leoti, Kansas: Monolithic Domes with a Vintage Look

At Leoti, Kansas, the new domes designed by Architect Lee Gray had to blend attractively with structures built in 1928 and 1954.

How do you get spanking new Monolithic Domes to look like they belong next to traditional structures built in 1928 and added to in 1954? That was one of the challenges that Architect Lee A. Gray of Salt Lake City, Utah faced in designing three Monolithic Domes for schools in Leoti, Kansas.

Monolithic Dome Cafeteria at Dale, Oklahoma

The walkway to the dome has a canopy over it, and the front door is FEMA approved for wind resistance.

Dale, Oklahoma is a very small community 30 miles east of Oklahoma City. It doesn’t include many people nor much land area. But thanks to Frank Dale, the legendary territorial chief justice that it’s named after, since about 1893 Dale has had somewhat of an eyebrow-raising history. But now Dale has yet another, surprising feature: their Monolithic Dome school cafeteria.

Woodsboro, Texas ISD: Going Even Greener!

In October 2011, Woodsboro dedicated their 20,000-square-foot gym.

“We were fortunate,” Steven Self, School Superintendent at Woodsboro, Texas said. “At the same time that we were doing the dome, we learned through Meridian Solar that we could apply for a solar grant with the State of Texas Comptroller.”

Trinidad School District Gymnasium and Field House

This super energy efficient Monolithic Dome Gymnasium is now a tornado shelter as well.  The power savings will equal the cost of the building in less than 20 years.  The lifetime is expected to be centuries.

Trinidad, a Texas rural community of 1100 and school district with about 300 students, has been using its Monolithic Dome gymnasium and field house for about seven years now, since their completion in October 2004.  

First Dome School Opens in Kansas

The deadly tornadoes that hit the southern United States were a vivid reminder of the tragic consequences that ensue when people do not have a safe shelter during severe weather. They also served to make Fowler school officials even more grateful that they had the foresight to build a Monolithic Dome multipurpose building to house their new gymnasium, band/vocal room and computer lab. The building, which is the first of its kind in Kansas, was funded in part by a $345,000 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Big Open House at Fowler USD 225

Rendering of Fowler’s Gymnasium — Michael McCoy of Midwest City, OK began designing Monolithic Dome facilities in 2008. Asked if Monolithic Dome designing is either harder or easier than more commonly expected and accepted architecture in America, Michael said, "It’s neither harder nor easier. It’s a different building system that includes elements that a typical construction simply doesn’t have.

On Wednesday, May 11th, Fowler USD 225 in Fowler, Kansas will host an all-day, gala event celebrating the opening of their Monolithic Dome gymnasium, and they’re inviting everyone! Superintendent Sam Seybold put it this way. "We want a good turnout. I think it’s really important, especially with what’s been happening with the tornadoes in the South, for schools and communities to know (about Monolithic Domes).

Avalon Dome Provides Safe Haven During Tornadoes

Avalon ISD Multipurpose Center — A safe haven for Avalon citizens during recent tornados rumbled through the community.

When the Avalon Independent School District in Texas needed a new multipurpose building, Superintendent David Del Bosque had safety at top of his mind. Since the nearby Italy school district had just completed a Monolithic Dome multipurpose center of its own, the decision was easy. “I personally was concerned about safety for students: the stability of the building in case of a storm,” Del Bosque said, adding that when he saw Italy’s dome, he knew that it was “the safest structure anywhere.”

Arizona School Opens Innovative Dome Campus

Charter schools are known for their innovative curriculum and pioneering strategies. It is fitting, therefore, that the Career Success Charter High School in Phoenix has housed its newest campus in four Monolithic Domes. Located just east of downtown, the brightly colored structures are painted to look like planets - Earth, Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune. The buildings are also totally solar powered and equipped with the latest technology.

Interview With: Jay Watson- Kelton ISD

Note: When we recently interviewed Mr. Watson for an article about the new Monolithic Dome on his campus, he had great comments about the project that didn’t get into the article. Here’s what he had to say:

Letter From: David Del Bosque, Avalon ISD

Yesterday we mobilized over 300 people into the Multipurpose Center very quickly and safely. First, I would like to commend all district staff for your quick response and how orderly you moved students to shelter. It was important that we do this quickly without causing a panic. We were able to accomplish that yesterday.

Innovative Buildings for an Innovative School

Robert L. Duffy High School, which will open its doors this fall in Phoenix, is a different kind of school. While it does offer core curriculum classes in English, math, social studies and science, it also has career-focused classes designed to help students get an entry-level job in the field of their choice. It’s fitting, therefore, that this innovative curriculum will be housed in innovative buildings—three Monolithic Dome school buildings to be exact.

21st Century School: Grand Meadow in Minnesota

In a special section on the 21st century school, The Post-Bulletin in Rochester, Minnesota highlighted a number of innovations ranging from new teaching methods to state-of-the-art building styles. There’s Gibbs Elementary, set to open later this year, which features interactive white boards that can display videos and other high-tech material. There are the 5,000 Minnesota students who are taking all of their classes online. And then there’s arguably the most innovative school of all, and it’s Grand Meadow School, which opted to build five Monolithic Dome buildings in 2002. Eight years after it opened, the school is still making news. And it’s not just the shape that makes the school noteworthy. Superintendent Joe Brown reports that the school saves 25 percent per year on maintenance and energy costs.

Grand Meadow Schools

Articles pertaining to the Grand Meadow School district on the Monolithic website.

District Administration Magazine Spotlights Woodsboro

When the Federal Emergency Management Agency agreed to help fund construction of a Monolithic Dome in Niangua, Missouri, an area that had been hit by tornadoes in the past, school officials across the nation took notice. When FEMA announced in December that it was also going to help fund a Monolithic Dome in South Texas, the media started taking notice too.

Geronimo! Bond Passed!

Geronimo, Oklahoma — A whopping 73% of Geronimo’s voters passed a $5.7 million bond, $4 million of which was slated for the construction of five Monolithic Domes.

There’s not much to look at as you drive up Interstate 44 from Texas into Oklahoma – until you get a bit south of Lawton. Then, surprise, surprise! Off to your right you spot the rounded tops of a cluster of copper colored Monolithic Domes, just sitting there in the middle of what appears to be nowhere. It isn’t. It’s Geronimo, Oklahoma, 0.53 square miles of Comanche County and home for almost 1000 residents.

Letter From: Danny McCuiston- Geronimo ISD

Please consider this letter as a letter of reference for the utilization of the Monolithic Dome method of construction for your consideration. This school district has just completed five (5) dome structures and are very satisfied the buildings will be energy efficient, safe from weather extremes and have a very long life. We also feel one of the most positive attributes to the construction of the Monolithic Dome is the simplicity of the design which will allow the building to retain it’s usefulness and far outlast conventional building methods.

Groundbreaking on New Multipurpose Facility

Muscogee Creek Nation Multi-Purpose Facility

The Muscogee (Creek) Nation recently broke ground a 160-foot diameter Monolithic Dome multipurpose facility adjacent to an existing sports complex in Okmulgee, Oklahoma. The Muscogee Phoenix newspaper covered the groundbreaking of the $4 million facility, which is scheduled for completion in 2010.

Muscogee (Creek) Nation to Build Monolithic Dome

Rendering of proposed multipurpose facility — Michael McCoy, the Oklahoma-based architect on the project, said the Monolithic Dome’s energy efficiency and strength both were key factors in the Muscogee (Creek) Nation’s decision to go with dome construction.

The Muscogee (Creek) Nation is making plans to build a 160-foot diameter Monolithic Dome multipurpose facility adjacent to their existing sports complex in Okmulgee, Oklahoma. The $4 million facility, which will encompass more than 20,000 square feet, will include spectator seating, classrooms, concessions and several multi-use areas. Construction is set to begin in late summer and will be completed in 2010.

Grand Hassle Nets Grand Facility

Children’s Reading Center (CRC) — On its 11-acre site, CRC built a facility with five Monolithic Domes, funded primarily through a USDA loan.

“The result was worth the effort!” That was how Robert Melosh, facility project coordinator, at the Children’s Reading Center (CRC) described all he and school administrators had to go through to get their new school.

New Monolithic Dome Multipurpose Center at Avalon

Avalon, Texas Multipurpose Center  — This Monolithic Dome gymnasium and center has a diameter of 124 feet and a height of 37 feet that includes a 12-foot-high stemwall.

While the population count of Avalon, Texas may be in doubt and small, its pride and interest in their school is not. Most recent proof of that is Avalon’s new Multipurpose Center, for its 250 students in pre-kindergarten to Grade 12. Designed by Monolithic Architect Rick Crandall and built with a 12’ stemwall, this Monolithic Dome measures 124′ × 25′ with a total height of 37 feet.

Tolchii Kooh’s Monolithic Dome Schools – 1998

Traditional Decor — Entrances to the Monolithic Domes are enhanced with traditional Native American patterns.

When the Native American community saw their need for not one, but two, new school facilities on its Navajo Indian Reservation in Arizona, they got innovative. Superintendent Mark Sorenson explained, “We designed Tolchii Kooh to be like a district office, with Leupp and Little Singer as independent schools, subcontracted to Tolchii Kooh.”

Monolithic Domes Create 25th Century Art School

School of Communication Arts — Roger Klietz, founder and president of SCA in Raleigh, North Carolina, designed the sculpture at its entrance.

“This looks like the art school of the 25th century!” According to Roger Klietz, founder and president of the School of Communication Arts (SCA) in Raleigh, North Carolina, that was the reaction one consultant had after seeing SCA’s new Monolithic Dome campus.

A New, Monolithic Dome Technology Center

Rock Port Technology Center — This Monolithic Dome’s single floor design of 14,500 square feet includes 7 labs, classrooms and a library for its 423 students and 45 teachers.

If you want to talk to happy, excited people, just call or visit Rock Port, Missouri. This mainly agricultural community, populated by only 1500 and located a short eight miles from the great Missouri River, recently completed a new, Monolithic Dome Technology Center for its school.

October 2008 – Geronimo School Builds Fifth Tornado-Proof Building

Construction crews building a new middle school and high school in Geronimo, Oklahoma will be turning heads on Monday, October 6th (weather permitting) when they use giant fans to inflate a huge balloon, known as an Airform to create the shape of the school’s fifth and final dome building.

September 2008 – Dome School Facility Proposed for Fowler, Kansas

USD225 in Fowler will find out in November whether it can build a futuristic, energy-efficient dome building to serve as a new multi-purpose facility. Voters will decide on November 4th whether to approve a $1.94 million bond issue that would fund construction of a Monolithic Dome structure that would house a computer/technology lab, a new band/vocal room, a new gymnasium, two locker rooms, and a commons/concession area.

Payson Athletic Center

Payson Athletic Center — This Monolithic Dome was designed as a Multipurpose Educational Facility for Payson High School in Payson, Arizona.

Coaches, athletes and sports fans are delighted with Payson Unified School District’s new multipurpose dome, which will be home to the district’s middle and high school basketball, volleyball and wrestling teams.

It’s A Hit: NCTC’s Monolithic Dome Performing Arts Center

FSB at NCTC — The First State Bank of Gainesville, Texas sponsored the name of the new Performing Arts Center at North Central Texas College.

“The best experience we have ever had building anything,” said Dr. Steve Broyles, Dean of Administrative Services at NCTC (North Central Texas College) in Gainesville. He was talking about NCTC’s new Monolithic Dome Performing Arts Center at its grand opening dedication on April 8, 2005.

Pattonsburg, Missouri Gets A New Monolithic Dome School — Finally!

Pattonsburg, Missouri — In 1998, this small, rural community began construction of four Monolithic Domes.

The atmosphere around Pattonsburg, Missouri virtually sings with the sounds of construction, excitement and anticipation. After five years of what School Superintendent Gene Walker described as, “more than our fair share of trials and tribulations,” this small, rural community watches the completion of its new school facility — four Monolithic Domes.

A Super Gymnasium: Gladiator Coliseum

Gladiator Coliseum at Italy, Texas High School — This Monolithic Dome  has a diameter of 148 feet, two stories with seating for 1500, a gym with a walking track, an auditorium, classrooms for special activities, concession stands, ticket booths, locker rooms and bathrooms, and concrete parking areas. Its 2002 construction cost: $85 per square foot.

Once the 2000 residents of Italy, Texas, where Monolithic is headquartered, passed a $2 million bond for a Multipurpose Center, administrators began researching popular construction of school facilities. Superintendent Mike Clifton said, “Of course we were all familiar with the domes. We had a good overview. But we really had to see for ourselves, so we visited Thousand Oaks — a dome already operating — and we came away convinced.”