San Marin High School

New Performing Arts Center

Novato, CA

San Marin High School’s new Emily Gates Performing Arts Center (PAC) has given students, staff and the community a dedicated space for performances previously held in the school’s ill-equipped multi-purpose room.

The 225-seat PAC incorporates state-of-the-art equipment and classroom support spaces, including a greenroom, lobby, ticket booth and restrooms. Located on the campus’ central courtyard, it has become an iconic feature of the campus, enlivening this area of the school site in a way the old multipurpose room was not able to do. The PAC’s proximity to the campus at large has provided greater visibility of the programs it houses therefore generating increased interest and participation in San Marin High School’s performing arts curriculum.

The building is solar ready and incorporates many sustainable features, including natural daylighting and ventilation, low-flow plumbing fixtures, energy efficient lighting and mechanical systems, as well as drought tolerant landscaping.

Making a Difference
Students interested in the arts now no longer have to practice and perform in an ill-fitting multi-purpose space. Instead, they now have a dedicated and state-of-the-art theater that also doubles as a technical education space.
"When it became clear that our original plan to modernize San Marin High School’s cafeteria-turned-theater was structurally unfeasible, QKA seamlessly shifted gears by thoughtfully incorporating multiple stakeholders to design a beautiful new Performing Arts Center at the heart of the campus. The enhanced performance space brings out the best in student learning and achievement for all the campus arts programs."
- Melissa Duggan, Facilities Project Manager - Bond, NUSD

School District
Novato Unified School District

8,383 sq.ft. (New Construction)

Completion Date
November 2021

Final Construction Cost


High School
New Construction
Performing Arts