Hilltop Montessori School
Hilltop Montessori School is a private K-8 school located at 6 Abbott Square in the Mt Laurel development in Shelby County. The school has a total enrollment of about 280 students. Its executive director is Michele Wilensky.
Groundbreaking on the 16,000 square-foot building, designed by HKW Associates, took place in January 2006, and the school opened that November. On August 29, 2008, the $2.5 million building was one of the first in Alabama to earn certification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program of the U.S. Green Building Council.
The building features many windows allowing natural light to shine through, and is shaded by large trees. All the materials inside the school are made of natural or recycled materials. The tile in the bathroom is made from recycled glass, and the insulation is made of recycled blue jeans. In addition, the shingles are reflective to reduce heat absorption, and the driveway and parking areas are covered with pea gravel, which is more porous than concrete.
Ground was broken on the third phase of the building in September 2015. The expansion was designed by Williams Blackstock Architects and included additional classroom space along with a gymnasium, a teaching kitchen, and facilities for community meetings. A $5.3 million bond secured through the Shelby County Economic & Industrial Development Authority allowed the school to complete the $3.4 million project and to secure better terms on its outstanding debts.
- Hilltop Montessori School website
- Vickery, Scottie (August 4, 2008) "Hilltop Montessori school in Mt Laurel earns green award." The Birmingham News
- O'Donnell, Joe (November 2008) "Building Green: Making the case for sustainable, environmentally friendly construction." Birmingham Magazine. Vol. 48, No. 11, pp. 114-22
- Reed, Martin J. (August 12, 2015) "Hilltop Montessori School in Mt Laurel starting major expansion project." The Birmingham News