Cottonwood Elementary School

About the Project

Frequently Asked Questions

The new Cottonwood Elementary School combines and replaces Joe Stanley Smith and Craft Elementary School facilities. The new school is scheduled to house a total of 699 students attending grades 1-5. The site of the new elementary school campus is east of the Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC). The design team is led by Dekker/Perich/Sabatini (D/P/S) and Mitchell & Cruse Architecture, LLC (MCA).

Project Stats

Grades: 1-5 Students: 699
Project Building Size: 83,842 sf
Project Site Size: 12.6 acres
Project Construction Cost: $23,364,000
Project Construction Schedule: September 2018 to November 2019
School Opening Date is set for January 2020

Project Schedule

Programming PhaseNovember 2017 (completed)
Schematic Design PhaseJanuary 2018 (completed)
Design Development PhaseMarch 2018 (completed)
Construction Documents PhaseJuly 2018 (completed)
Contractor SelectionSeptember 2018 (completed)
Construction Phase BeginsOctober 2018
School OpensJanuary 2020

Update: 7/22/2019 | Photo Contest Winners

The photo contest winners for the super graphics that will support wayfinding in the new school have been chosen. We can't wait to see these super graphics come to life. The winners:

  • In the category of Mountains/Montañas – Sunset Light Trails by Brad Molgaard
  • In the category of Waterfalls/Cascadas – Sitting Bull Falls Rainbow by Larry Pardue
  • In the category of Caverns/Caverns – Three by Brad Molgaard
  • In the category of Desert/Desierto – Fall Ocotillo by Larry Pardue
  • In the category of Rivers/Rios – Green by Brad Molgaard

Update: 5/23/2019 | Construction is On Schedule

As you drive by the site you will start to see some of the following things happening:

  • Installation of the exterior sheathing and studs
  • Installation of the roofing material
  • Installation of the interior walls including mechanical and plumbing systems
  • Paving of the exterior site work and drive lanes
  • Installation of the playground area and basketball courts to the south of the building

We are excited to see the project developing into a wonderful space for the current and future children of Carlsbad, New Mexico!

The media center taking shape

Update: 11/8/2018 | Learning Courtyards

Here is a look at the three learning courtyards designed to accommodate different modes of learning used by teachers of all school grade levels. Each courtyard is organized between the classroom wings for teacher supervision and designed around a theme; reading, gardening, and music.

The reading courtyard will have comfortable synthetic turf grass in a mound configuration and shade canopies for students to enjoy reading, or being read to, while enjoying the outdoors.

The gardening courtyard incorporates several planter beds with instruction area and shade canopy for students to learn about biology and plant life.

The music courtyard includes creative and fun outdoor instruments for interaction, and a seating area for music instruction and learning.

All of the courtyards are, and will be, available for individual student or group classroom use. Any grade class can use a learning courtyard for an outdoor lesson or individual student good behavior reward.

Update: 9/24/2018 | Construction is Underway!

The contractor, Bradbury Stamm Construction, was selected via low bid process. The Carlsbad Municipal Schools School Board voted to include the original base bid building for 627 students, the construction of three additional classrooms increasing the building capacity to 699 students, and the public right-of-way deceleration lane into the project.

The new school is on schedule to break ground this fall for a January 2020 completion. During a recent presentation to the Carlsbad Municipal School Board, we discussed the following items:

  • A contractor is scheduled to be selected through a bid process in September.
  • Teacher and visitor parking will be in the front of the building to avoid traffic through a nearby neighborhood.
  • Buses will utilize the existing bus loop at the Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC) and access a new bus drop off at Elementary School #3.
  • The playground will be located behind the building.
  • Each grade level will have their own wing with six classrooms. An additional centralized seventh floating classroom will also be included for all grades to use during a large student population year.

We're looking forward to entering the next phase of design as we select final interior finishes!

Update: 2/27/2018 | Community Presentation

Thank you for joining us at the community open house for the new Carlsbad Elementary School. On February 27, we met with the community to discuss the design progress of CMS Cottonwood Elementary School. We received great feedback and suggestions to consider as we move forward. We appreciate your participation, and we will continue to post design updates!

Related Articles

New School 2020: Construction on time and underway, design development phase this month, from Current Argus, 03.19.2018

Architectural Firm Gives Update on Elementary School, from Current Argus, 12.20.17

Local Firm to Assist in Elementary School Design, from Current Argus, 11.10.17

Carlsbad to Get Third Elementary School, from Current Argus, 09.25.18

CMS Opens Photo Contest to Decorate New Elementary School, from Current Argus, 03.06.2019

Cottonwood Elementary construction proceeding on time, on budget, from Current Argus, 08.28.2019

Visit Carlsbad Municipal Schools' Website

Learn More About the Project Team

Bradbury Stamm Construction