Tahoe Expedition Academy
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Tahoe Expedition Academy

January 27, 2018

The Tahoe Expedition Academy (TEA) master plan and development creates a new 42-acre adventure-based educational campus for an independent pre-K through 12th grade experiential learning school. Founded in 2011, TEA focuses on high-level academics, character building, hands-on exploration and adventure; the new campus creates a complementary environment for this unconventional educational approach.

The new campus includes over 108,125 square feet of building area as well as outdoor activity and learning spaces for an enrollment of 350 students. The campus includes five academic buildings; support buildings including administration, shops, a field house, multi-use field and outdoor commons; indoor theater; and boarding for 40 students and three faculty housing units.

Given the exceptional nature of the school, the design process was unlike any other. As TEA positions itself to become a national leader in experimental pedagogical strategy, it aims to support a wide range of learning modalities far beyond the conventional. Flexibility is key. Interior walls are minimized and openness allows the school to evolve over time, particularly in the older grades which bring less prescriptive requirements. Program elements are housed in smaller structures more appropriate to the character of Truckee, while also giving students a constant connection to the outdoors throughout the day.

TEA is designed from the ground up to exist harmoniously with the environment, with an extremely ambitious goal of achieving Net Zero Energy status.


Truckee, CA/On-going

Project Type

K-12 School

Project Team

Peter Pfau, Principal In Charge
Marcos Ancinas, Senior Project Manager

Team Members

Gabbart and Woods, Structural
CMG, Landscape
Crick, Civil
Interface, MEP

Project Scope

Master Plan; New Construction

Square Footage

108,125 gsf
42 Acres


Goal of Net Zero Energy

Photographic Credit

Pfau Long Architecture

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