Berkeley High Master Planning Archive, 1993-Present
This page occasionally updated by Bruce Wicinas,  Citizens' Construction Advisory Committee  Last updated  1/11/2005

Source of graphics above: 1996 BHS Master Plan.  "The future" as envisioned in 1996.   

Current BHS Site Plan (not cooked)
Current (2002) BHS Site Plan
Aerial View, BHS and Downtown
Full Inventory of BHS Campus Built Space
Campus Needs Survey, May, 2001  
Minutes #1 Tuesday, March 20, 2001
Minutes of all subsequent 2001 meetings  Available on request. Contact Bruce Wicinas.
Questions and Answers (from 2001)   (e.g., "What's happening with "B" Building?)
Old Gym Pre-Programming Workshop Summary June 20, 2001  

The Measure AA of 2000 Bond Spending Plan (from the "Orange Book")
(The subsequent documents were typed from old paper copies obtained by Bruce Wicinas, CCAC.  There is much more.)
Excerpt from the 1999 South Campus Planning Committee Sessions
"The Planning Game"   (from "Five Year Action Plan", '96)
Excerpts from the 1996 SMWM Master Plan
 Known as the "Five Year Action Plan." This determined the program of the Milvia Street building now under construction .
1993 VBN Master Plan (superceded in 1996)
The 1937 Master Plan

Chronology of Berkeley High Master Planning Episodes, 1993-Present.
The links above include documents from each episode.

2002 BHS Facilities Issues Meetings   Convened March, 2002; on-going through fall, 2002. Bill Savidge, chair. Topics of discussion: 1. New building layout / program. 2. New building food service, cafeteria, commons. 3. New building furnishings. 4. Rear of "C" building, quad. 5. Classroom space / capacity. 6. "Small Schools" facilities impacts. 7. Plan for campus drop-off. 8. Need for a new Master Plan for BHS campus. ... and more.

2001 Old-Gym Pre-Programming Meetings   With the passage of school bond measure AA in November, 2000, BUSD acquired funds to rennovate the Old Gym. This was is a major change of circumstances. The '96 BHS master plan, which informed the design of the Mlvia Street Building currently under construction, presumed that the Old Gym would be demolished. Because the process of planning through building occupancy as it occurs at Berkeley High requires six years (this is the track record of the Milvia Street Building), the superintendent and board wished to "start the clock" for the Old Gym rehab as soon as possible.

Rennovation will allow the Old Gym's interior space to be divided among multiple uses, including new classrooms. What are the appropriate uses? According to the plan an architecture firm would be hired in May, 2001 and "schematic design" would begin. With an architect on board the schematic design process would require many decisions in what would seem a short amount of time. The time preceding the hiring of the architect offered a precious opportunity for a less hurried discussion of education priorities.

These meetings were convened by James Hallam and Bruce Wicinas and the Citizens' Construction Advisory Committee (CCAC) in the absence of Lew Jones, with the encouragement of the acting BUSD administration. The CCAC had advocated the need for this pre-programming phase for the Old Gym project to allow adequate discussion of the high school's priorities. The meetings were held in afternoons immediately after the school day, consistent with their purpose as a forum for BHS faculty. Through the course of the meetings nearly all the departments were represented. Few parents or community members participated.

Hallam and Wicinas were promised that a professional educational facilities expert would assume the facilitator role. This did not happen, but an expert was secured to conduct a one-afternoon planning workshop on May 29.

Present on 3/20/2001 (or *interested.)  Others including Frank Lynch and BUSD administrators attended later.
Lee Amosslee
Bill Gaebler
Lawrence Lee
Robert L. McKnight
Karen Sarlo
Bruce Wicinas
Rick Ayers
James Hallam
Laura Leventer
Stetton Mitchell
Kristin Shepherd*
Benette Williams
Angela Canepa*
Philippe Henri
Jeffrey E. Lindemann
Jud Owens
Zack Sultan
Betty Jo Yamamoto*
Dan Eggen
Michele Jausseu
Fred Lupke
Dana Richards
Naomi Washington

Outcome of 2001 meetings
1.  Informed the staff of what was under construction on Milvia St. (Due to the five year time lapse from '96 planning through '01 groundbreaking, most current staff were uninformed about the project.)
2.  Consensus among BHS staff to demolish building "B". 
3.  Selection of an architect for the Old Gym rennovation, Akol & Yoshii Architects. Submissions by numerous firms were reduced to four. The four were interviewed by the selection committee.
4.  Review of several past planning efforts and first cuts at updated facilities priorities for BHS.
5.  Public workshop for Old Gym pre-planning, May 29, 2001, facilitated by Henry Sanoff, a nationally-recognized educational facilities authority.

1999 South Campus Planning Committee   Concerned about the growth of the BHS campus population and about needs which would not be addressed by the Milvia Street building, Superintendent McLaughlin commenced master planning meetings focused on the south portion of the BHS campus. The firm ELS architects was hired as planning consultant, facilitating the meetings and providing expertise. The minutes of these meetings list a broad range of stakeholders, including the BHS faculty, the City, the disabled community and the BUSD community. The meetings explored use alternatives for the Old Gym and arrangements of the southern part of the BHS campus. Outcome of 1999 meetings.  There was no formal product of these meetings other than plans and minutes which ELS recorded. The meetings terminated before their scheduled conclusion. The effective outcome, however, was the 2000 School Bond campaign itself. The discussions convinced Superintendent McLaughlin that the south campus improvements were necessary and could be accomplished only via another bond. The campaign got rolling on November 9, 1999, when Jack M. met with his "cabinet" and a couple of citizen representatives.

1996 BHS Master Plan  A "request for proposal" was broadcast to the community of master planning consultants. Several firms submitted. From these candidates the Board selected Simon Martin-Vegue Winkelstein Moris (SMWM). The Board approved funding, and the process began. This time it was rigorous, exhaustive and exhausting. A select group participated in a series of meetings. The public was engaged via two public workshops. The second featured the "planning game." (See "The Planning Game" link above.) The outcome was a list of eight major goals for BHS. Inadequately-resolved issues - such as parking - were flagged for future study.     The "1996 BHS Master Plan" had the authority which the '93 plan had lacked. There was no subsequent clamor for master planning for several years. The Milvia Street building is the "bricks and mortar" outcome of these sessions. Its design obviously embodies the goals called out in the plan.

1993 BHS Master Plan  Soon after the passage of the Measure A bond arose a cry for a master plan to inform the improvement of facilities at Berkeley High. VBN, the architectural firm of the rehab of G and H buildings, was already engaged with the campus and staff. VBN offered to do a master plan for BHS, and the District and Board agreed. But the outcome was not accepted. Too many people felt that the effort was not sufficient. So the Board agreed to commission another master plan.

Importance of Continuity of Participation   A planning process works best if the key participants stay with it from start to finish. If new people join along the way and expect to revisit topics which the group had covered earlier, the duration of the process extends, the original group drops out, and the authorship of the outcome is ambiguous.

It is understood that high school staff's available time for this sort of enterprise is a scarce resource.