Proj Overview
The Bismarck Public School District has experienced rapid growth in recent years – growth that led to larger class sizes and longer commutes for many students. Built to address these challenges, the Silver Ranch Elementary and Elk Ridge Elementary Schools aim to provide a solution that not only eases the burden of transportation but also ensures smaller class sizes for students throughout the district.

Silver Ranch Elementary and Elk Ridge Elementary used the same structural design for their campuses, but they wanted different exteriors to set each school apart. The two schools were constructed simultaneously and share an identical footprint and overall design. However, they each display their unique character and charm through distinct exterior features. Together, these twin schools stand as a testament to the commitment of the community to provide exceptional educational facilities while celebrating the diversity and individuality of their neighborhoods.

The advantages of using prefabrication for these projects were multifaceted. Prefabrication offered consistency with previous schools in the region, aligning with the preferences of architects and engineers familiar with precast construction. Additionally, prefabrication accelerated the project's timeline, allowing for a quicker turnaround and the opportunity to enclose the buildings swiftly, enabling interior work to proceed even in the challenging winter months.

Each school utilized the following:
•    167 Architectural Insulated Wall Panels, totaling 32,673 square feet.
•    5 Architectural Solid Wall Panels totaling 600 square feet.
•    41 Structural Solid Wall Panels totaling 7,788 square feet.

Each school features the following:
•    24 Classrooms
•    Two Pre-K Classrooms
•    Two Music Rooms
•    One Gymnasium
•    One ED Classroom
•    One ID Classroom
•    Three Specialized Classrooms
•    Three Collaboration Spaces
•    Commons / Cafeteria
•    Kitchen
•    Two Playgrounds

Silver Ranch Elementary: The Silver Ranch development is a community with bicycle paths, tennis courts, and other elements that celebrates families living together. A natural fit to this ideology was an elementary school.

The 70,000 square foot school utilized architectural insulated wall panels for the building. These wall panels were a combination of form finish brown blocks at the base with a barnwood formliner on top. Poured in gray, the barnwood formliner ran vertically with field staining by Nawkaw for a realistic wood aesthetic.

These two projects show the versatility of prefabrication. One footprint with two vastly different aesthetics!


There are no records.
Project Team


Icon Architectural Group


CW Structural Engineers


Northwest Contracting


Bismarck Public Schools



Precast Specialty Engineer:



Northwest Contracting

Key Project Attributes

  • Identical footprint schools but vastly different exterior looks
  • Nawkaw staining on Silver Ranch Elementary for a “barn wood” look
  • Random rib pattern on top portion of panels on Elk Ridge Elementary
  • Both schools feature multi-mix panels – the form was turned daily to accomplish the advanced panels.

Project/Precast Scope

  • Architectural Insulated Wall Panels – 167pcs – 32673 sq ft
  • Architectural Solid Wall Panels – 5pcs – 600 sq ft
  • Structural Solid Wall Panels – 41pcs – 7788 sq ft