Southwest Middle School is getting a new campus

Construction is nearly complete on a modern new campus for the school founded in Lakeland in 1956.

Rendering of the new Southwest Middle School from the outside

Construction has begun on modern new buildings at Southwest Middle School.

Rendering provided by Straughn Trout Architects

Change is coming to Southwest Middle School (2815 Eden Pkwy.). Following a groundbreaking ceremony held Sept. 15, 2022, construction started on an all-new campus, which is now set to be complete in the spring of 2024. Curious what the new digs will look like? Straughn Trout Architects shared renderings of the modern developments.

The goal of the $55 million Southwest Middle School Campus Modernization master plan is to update the entire school, which was founded in 1956. Around 800+ students are currently enrolled — after construction finishes, capacity could increase to around 1,350 students.

Rendering of the exterior Southwest Middle School courtyard and school building

Students + staff will both enjoy this spacious courtyard.

Rendering provided by Straughn Trout Architects

How will the middle school accommodate all those new students? A new two-story building totaling more than 175,000 sqft will be on the north side of the current campus. The plans include:

  • Administrative offices
  • Classrooms + laboratories
  • Media center
  • Fine arts suite
  • Combined cafeteria + auditorium
  • Outdoor dining space

In addition to these features, there will also be a new bus loop, lit fields, and a new parent pick-up + drop-off location. Is it normal to be jealous of middle schoolers?

Rendering of the new entrance to Southwest Middle School

The modern design was created to better facilitate student success.

Rendering provided by Straughn Trout Architects

Students have been attending class as normal in the original buildings, and the project aimed not to interrupt campus operations. The school will transition into the new buildings upon completion and most of the older structures will be demolished, barring the original physical education facility, gym, and science building.

The Southwest Middle School Campus Modernization project is being funded by impact fees + Polk County’s half-cent sales tax.

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