Signature School is an Indiana Charter School serving nearly 400 students in grades 9 through 12. Their mission is designed to meet the needs of self-motivated learners in a progressive environment. The school is situated in a unique downtown setting but experienced significant growth over the years without space to handle it. With a waiting list of students, Signature School decided it was time to expand. Hafer designed an addition to their existing Robert L. Koch Science Center, now connecting the two buildings with a shared common space.
Plans included gutting the parking lot to build the addition and demolition of the clock tower. It was a desire of Signature School to keep the original clock tower in the new design so the clock was incorporated into the corner of the new building. The facade blends elements of the original brick with contemporary materials and detailing featuring glass, metal panels, and limestone brick.
As part of the project, a new front-door to the building was created which opens into a two-story atrium with an expansive skylight flooding the interior with natural light. The ground floor contains a new commons area where students and faculty can gather, complete with a catering kitchen and service spaces. On the second floor, two science labs and four general purpose classrooms were added along with a faculty lounge and workroom, and administrative offices. Existing space within the Science Center was also renovated.