RBHS Replacement Project

Rainier Beach High School Replacement Project

RBHS Ground Breaking Ceremony

Construction on the new Rainier Beach High School began in the Summer of 2022.

group looking at a model

Rainier Beach High School students, staff, alumni and community partners have a long history of excellence. However, the accomplishments and achievements of the student body have not been reflected in or supported by the physical state of the building the school occupies.

Thanks to the 2019 Building Excellence V school levy and a tremendous amount of advocacy and commitment from the Rainier Beach High School community, the Rainier Beach High School building will be replaced with a new, state of the art facility, finally worthy of the community it supports.

Construction Updates

  • We have hired our General Contractor to construct our amazing new school. Lydig Construction was awarded the privilege of building our community gem.
  • We are finalizing schematic design for our amazing new school and would love your input regarding green building strategies for Rainier Beach High School.  It is our priority to create a culture of conservation and environmentally responsible behaviors by combining learning and sustainability.
  • We are committed to working with community-based companies and contractors. Please visit Build the Beach for Us by Us to find out more and to connect with us.


working on plans

On December 8 and 15, 2020 the Rainier Beach High School design team held Integrated Design Workshops with the goal of establishing project priorities related to sustainable design strategies.

Participants included students and teachers participating in the School Design Advisory Team, Seattle Public Schools staff responsible for facilities and capital projects, and the architects and engineers working on the design of the new building. The workshops were held virtually using the Zoom platform.

Rainier Beach community has fought hard and long  to get our school on the BEX V Levy.

Below please find media links documenting RBHS advocacy for BEX inclusion from 2012-present.  Thank you and God Bless.

Please use available contact information below to get in touch with the SDAT team. We love to hear from our community!

Aminah Adams
RBHS Alum, Class of 2019

Naj Ali
RBHS Alum, Class of 2018

Michael Bethea
RBHS Boys Basketball Coach

Geoff Bolan
RBHS Career and Technical Education Teacher

Gloria Briggs
Parent, Former RBHS PTSA President

Ivory Brooks
RBHS Principal

Dwayne Chapelle
Former RBHS Principal
City of Seattle Dept. of Education and Early Learning Director

Winston Cole
RBHS Alum, Class of 2021

Kevin Curtis
RBHS Special Education Teacher

George Foster
RBHS Athletics Director

Thomas Foster
RBHS Alum, Class of 2022

Rhonda Goodrich
RBHS Parent/ PTSA/ Rainier Beach Neighbor

Frankco Gratton
RBHS Alum, Class of 2021

Brandon Hersey
Seattle School Board Director, District 7

Pam and Andrew Heyman
RBHS Parents/ PTSA /Rainier Beach Neighbors

Marty Jackson
Community Partner, SE Network/Rainier Vista, Safe Passage

Miracle Jackson
RBHS Alum, Class of 2020

Aaron Jefferson
RBHS Ceramics Teacher

Gary Ladd
RBHS Security Specialist

Lyssa Lou
Community Partner/ Rainier Beach Neighbor

Robynn Mallory
RBHS Registrar

Steven Miller
RBHS IB Coordinator/ Language Arts Teacher

Sarah Moges
RBHS Librarian

Karla Nyquist
RBHS Science Teacher

Annie Patu
Former RBHS Assistant Principal

Betty Patu
Retired Seattle School Board Director, District 7

Virginia Patu-Bethea
RBHS Family Support/ Community Co-Lead RBHS Onsite Replacement Team/ BEX Oversight

Sudee Phavong
RBHS Alum, Class of 2021

Sarah Pritchett
SPS Director of Schools

Nicolas Ragland
RBHS Physical Education Teacher

Angelina Riley
RBHS Alum, Class of 2021

Kelly Rolon
RBHS Spanish Teacher

Gian Rosario
RBHS Alum, Class of 2018

Connie So
Community Partner, Asian/Pacific Islander (OCA)

Deborah Stanley
RBHS Teen Health Center Coordinator (King County)

Laura Stewart
RBHS Nurse Practitioner (King County)

Savali Taamu
RBHS Counselor

LaNita Thomasson
RBHS Administrative Secretary

Autumn Tocchi
RBHS Science Teacher

Evan Tomchick
RBHS IB History Teacher

Grace Wedgwood
RBHS Spanish Teacher

Funding for the Project

air view of campus

In the 2019 Building Excellence V (BEX V) levy, Seattle voters approved funding for the construction project which will replace Rainier Beach High School with a new multi-story high school of approximately 233,700 square feet.

When completed, it will provide permanent space for 1,600 students grades 9-12. The project also includes renovation of the existing Performing Arts Center. Students will remain onsite during the phased construction. BEX V funding will also provide technology equipment and services, such as computers, printers, and other technology for teaching and learning.

building plans

The Rainier Beach construction project is currently in the design development phase, in which the School Design Advisory Team (SDAT) collaborate with the architects to develop elements of the building that will support programming needs and the culture of the community.

The SDAT is composed of members of the school and community who help guide the design process by advising how the building design can align with the culture and educational needs Rainier Beach High School. This group works closely with the district’s project manager, and the architects for the project and will participate in a series of workshops and tours throughout the construction process.

Share Design Feedback

working project

RBHS Updates from the District Capital Project Team

Rainier Beach High School Replacement Project

construction phase graphic showing that the school is in the Construction phase
Learn about each project phase

The existing Rainier Beach High School will be replaced with a new high school building on the same site. The construction will be done in phases so the school can remain on campus during the project.

You can contact SPS in your own language through the online feedback form


  • Predesign phase complete
  • Schematic design phase complete
  • Design development phase complete
  • Construction documents/permitting phase in progress
  • Bid and award phase complete
  • Phased construction: April 2022-December 2026
    • Phase 3 in progress
    • Estimated move into western 70% of new building: January 2025
    • Phase 4, construction of Performing Arts building expected completion June 2026
    • Phase 5, field installation expected completion December 2026.

Project Progress

See a story about the construction tent being used for winter and spring construction activities.

Progress updates are posted for the previous month.

Major Activity in August 2023

  • Completed installation of geothermal wells.
  • Completed underground utilities, below-grade waterproofing, and placement of concrete mat slabs.
  • Began steel erection on east portion of new school building.

Major Activity Planned for September 2023

  • Continue steel erection through mid-November.
  • Begin roof installation and weatherproofing strategies.

Live Webcams and Project Progress Photos

View the webcams to see the project live.

This slide show shows the project as it proceeds.

a drawing of a site plan that includes a building and playfields
Site plan for replacement project
aeriel photo of a large building with playfields surrounded by houses
Aerial view of the existing school prior to construction start
a two story building with a lift across from a portable
Phase 2 – Installing the electrical connection to the classroom portable – Summer 2022
a portable classroom
Phase 2 – Installing a double classroom portable for use during construction – Summer 2022
a small building inf ront of construction debris and light poles
Phase 2 – Demolition of the grandstands – Summer 2022
two workers and a ladder in a room with metal studs for walls
Phase 2 – Progress on temporary locker rooms – Summer 2022
a large room with risers has construction debris in the center
Phase 2 – Demolition to create a temporary locker room for use during construction – Summer 2022
construction equipment in front of a building
Phase 2 – Selected demolition of existing buildings – Summer 2022
a truck with a tall drill attached and people working
Phase 1 – Installing geothermal wells for heating and cooling – Summer 2022
a drilling rig stands above a field of dirt covered in straw. trucks are in the photo
Drilling geothermal wells at the existing baseball field – Sept. 2022
a person stands in a trench with a ladder in the trench nearby
Connecting geothermal wells located beneath the future practice field
a large concrete building has weather proofing material on it
Applied weather proofing to exterior facade of existing gym – Sept. 2022
trucks in a dirt field with light poles
Drilling geothermal wells on the existing baseball field – Oct. 2022
trucks with tall things attached in a dirt field
Beginning installation of rammed aggregate piers – Oct. 2022
a playfield with a light pole and some equipment
Dewatering water treatment tanks on site – Nov. 2022
a muddy field with construction equipment
Preparing site for tent installation – Nov. 2022
a pitched framework being installed with construction equipment
Installing tent over construction area to protect from rain and snow – Dec. 2022
a large frame work is being installed over an area with large rocks
Installing temporary construction tent – Dec. 2022
a tall drill machine with a person in a hard hat stands in a muddy field
Geothermal well installation continues – Dec. 2022
a large white tent sits in a muddy construction site
Temporary construction tent completed – Jan. 2023
metal forms stand on edge in dirt under a giant tent with lights. construction workers are using equipment
Trenching and rough-in for deep underground utilities – Jan. 2023
yellow mesh covers some areas of a gavel covered ground next to canvas walls
Future location of east electrical room – Feb. 2023
a vast spread of a rebar cage with workers adding more
Rebar is prepared for the concrete slab foundation
concrete mixer trucks lined up on a drive way among mud puddles
42 cement trucks delivered about 415 cubic yards of concrete – April 5, 2023
two cement mixer trucks are backed into openings in a large white tent
Two trucks at a time into the tent – April 5, 2023
a group of workers in safety vests and hard hats are using a pump from overhead to place concrete in rebar
Concrete is pumped in and placed in the rebar – April 5, 2023
a worker in a safety vest and hardhat is smoothing concrete in a large flat area
Concrete must be leveled and smoothed after placement – April 5, 2023
a person in boots with plastic wrapped at the top is wearing a safety vest and hard hat while wading in wet concrete and bending to smooth it with a piece of wood
Smoothing includes standing in wet concrete – April 5, 2023
inside a large tent workers are installing white material from rolls over gravel
Waterproofing on capillary break material – March 2023
under a large tent, white waterproofing material has a stack of electrical conduit placed in a guie frame with rebar beneath it
Waterproofing, rebar, and electrical conduit for inside of concrete slab foundation – March 2023
a grid of rebar inside concrete frames under a large tent
Preparation for concrete for mat slab 4A – April 2023
workers installing rebar in a pit under a big tent
Placing rebar and utility conduit on the waterproof membrane April 2023
a grid of rebar is at the bottom, a group of workers in hardhats and safety vests stands in the center, a concrete pump is in the back with a large tent structure over it all
Pouring additional foundation mat slabs – May 2023
rebar formed into tall grids sits in foreground on top of a white material. a large tent is in the background
Rebar installation for another mat slab for the foundation – May 2023
a crane is lifting a large frame piece from a structure of pipes
Disassembling the construction tent – May 2023
a grid of rebar inside a wood frame and a large area of white material spread behind it
Rebar for foundation mat slab #7 with waterproofing for mat slab #8 beyond – June 2023
an outdoor construction area with gravel and a concrete wall
Retaining wall at the loading dock – June 2023
a steel frame is being built on top of a concrete floor. a crane is on the left side
Steel erection began on the east part of the new school – August 2023
a steel frame has a large delivery trailer in front of it with bent steel on it
Steel erection underway with steel stair sections being delivered – August 2023

Community Involvement

School Design Advisory Team (SDAT)

Early in the design process, representatives from the school community come together to form a school’s SDAT. SDATs typically include school and district staff, parents, students, and community members. The project construction managers also take part. Due to the timing of the Rainier Beach SDAT, meetings were held virtually. Read more and review the meeting minutes.

A virtual community update about the Rainier Beach High School project was held on June 16.

Project Designs

Architects renderings of the new school

drawing of a large three story building with a walkway leading to it between trees
New main entry
drawing of a track and field in front on of a large building
Track and field
drawing of dining commons with lunch tables
1st floor dining commons
large common area with dining tables and stairs; a room with glass windows looking out toward below says LIBRARY
Library and dining commons
drawing of common area with windows looking out from the floor above
Dining commons looking toward gym
drawing of a gym with bleachers and orange and blue accents
drawing of a library with bookshelves and seating
Library located on 2nd floor
drawing of an open space with seating and a wall mural
3rd floor east commons
drawing of a walkway with railings that look down to the floor below
4th floor commons looking down
drawing of a small group area with a room next to it that has blue walls
4th floor small group area
drawing of an interior hallway
Theater lobby

About the Project

Rainier Beach High School will be replaced with a new four-story high school of approximately 297,000 square feet. When completed, it will provide permanent space for 1,600 students grades 9-12. Students will remain on-site during the phased construction. A regional Skills Center is being incorporated into the project as well as a district data center. The project is being built with aspirations of a LEED Platinum certification.

Design Firms: Bassetti Architects/Moody Nolan

Project Management Firm: Parametrix

General Contractor: Lydig Construction

Project Budget: $238.2M

Funding Source: Funded by the Building Excellence V Capital Levy (BEX V), approved by Seattle voters in 2019 and the Buildings, Technology, and Academics/Athletics V Capital Levy (BTA V), approved by Seattle voters in 2022.

Contact Us

Let’s Talk Comments and Questions Form

Parametrix Manager: Paul Popovich, ppopovich@parametrix.com, 253-208-7831

Rainier Beach High School
8815 Seward Park Ave. S
Seattle, WA 98118

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