San Mateo High School

Historic Classroom Building Renovation

San Mateo, CA

Originally constructed as a shop building, this project restored and renovated the last remaining, yet long neglected, 1920s brick building on the San Mateo High School campus. Providing much needed large meeting spaces, art studios and general classrooms, the building was seismically upgraded throughout, historically restored on the exterior, and outfitted with new technology, industrial materials and modern amenities on the inside.

The interior also showcases QKA’s utilization of the space’s vastness and a clerestory to bring in northern light – making the District’s vision of a space that is both modern and supports its learning curriculum, yet historically preserved.

"QKA designed a beautiful, extremely functional reuse of our former industrial arts space. The building includes several art classrooms with extraordinary light."
- Kevin Skelly, Ph.D., Former Superintendent, San Mateo UHSD

School District
San Mateo Union High School District

20,367 sq.ft. (Modernization)

Completion Date
September 2015

Final Construction Cost


High School
Seismic Upgrades
Art Studio
Black Box Theater


2016 Award of Excellence | Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH) & AIA California Council (AIACC) Leroy F. Greene Design + Planning Award

2016 Merit Award | American Institute of Architects (AIA) – Redwood Empire