Bear Creek Elementary School

Located in Southwest Austin, Bear Creek Elementary School is the first new school from Austin ISD’s 2017 Bond Program. Bear Creek provides relief to overcrowded schools in the area and offers innovative learning opportunities focused on collaboration, creativity and flexibility.

The new campus was designed with sustainability in mind, incorporating the topography of the landscape. Bear Creek comprises a one-story building with public spaces and a three-story academic building that blends into the site’s natural slope. Two enclosed bridges connect the buildings, providing the framework for the courtyard, which is designed for outdoor learning opportunities. It includes a small amphitheater, learning stairs that provide flexible seating and activity space, and a dry creek bed. One of Bear Creek’s most notable features is the elevated, outdoor classroom, which extends over the undisturbed land to the south, providing great views for students to learn about the environment.

The main entrance welcomes students and visitors alike, with well-defined separation between where parents and buses drop-off students. All visitors pass through a secure vestibule, with convenient access to the community room and media center near the school’s main entrance. Customized learning neighborhood entrances feature unique murals and animal tracks with information about local habitats to spark student exploration. Each level includes ample collaboration space and group study rooms to support a variety of learning styles.

Project Timeline

*Timeline and rendering subject to change

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Key Information

  • Modernization Budget: $36,167,000
  • Total Budget: $36,227,000
  • Opening Date: October 19, 2020
  • Trustee: Yasmin Wagner
  • Location: 12801 Escarpment Blvd., Austin, TX 78739
  • New Capacity: 522

Project Team

  • Architecture and Engineering Team:
  • Construction-Management-at-Risk Team:
  • Campus Architectural Team:
    • David Crissey, Principal at Bear Creek ES
    • Megan Counihan, Principal at Baranoff ES
    • Malisa O’Connell, Instructional Staff
    • Beth Cantu, Administrative Staff
    • Kristi Samon, Administrative Staff
    • Travis Nichols, Parent
    • Karina Cruz, Parent
    • Katy Smith, Parent
    • Amanda Krueger, Parent
    • Jessica Henderson, Parent
    • Melissa Tanis, Parent
    • Anoop Gopakumaran Nair, Community Member
    • Karen Hibpshman, Community Member