Galewood Elementary School Interiors

Chicago, Illinois / United States of America

The interiors of the 56,000-square-feet Galewood Elementary School are configured to engage students, educators, and Chicago’s Austin community in diverse activities that benefit all. The “Skyspace” Digital Library is its signature space, celebrating the school community through a soaring ceiling and enhancing the student body’s collective use of digital technology to access and share information.

Situated at the summit of the soaring, slope-roofed space at the south end of the building, the double-height room inspires students through its dramatic spatial experience. Skyspace’s layout enables various types of learning and interaction between students and teachers through a combination of large open study spaces: a Platform Flex Seating area, a Video/Presentation area, a Group Work area, a Genius Bar, a Media Work area with video screen access, a Small Group Work area, and a Soft Seating area.

Decentralized, flexible classrooms allow students to work in groups, present their ideas, strengthen collaboration and build confidence while configuring interior spaces to suit their needs, teaching them to actively, critically engage their environment.

Generous multipurpose spaces, located on the ground level, house activities for parents such as after-school yoga, fitness classes and community meetings, catalyzing change in an overcrowded neighborhood where community spaces are scarce.

Architect of Record

UrbanWorks, Ltd.


FH Paschen

General Contractor

FH Paschen


  • CE Anderson and Associates
  • CivCon Services
  • Eco Vidal Design