McCarver Elementary School Modernization


Historic school modernized to serve students and community.


K-12 Schools


Civil Engineering

Land Surveying


Association for Learning Environments, Washington State Chapter, 2017 People's Choice Award Winner

Historic renovation

Frontage improvements

ADA improvements

Historic school modernized to serve students and community.

AHBL served as the civil engineer and land surveyor for the modernization of McCarver Elementary School in Tacoma. Originally built in 1924, this historic school, located in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood, was modernized to better serve its 450 students. The newly renovated building also provides space for the community.

Due to the historical significance of the building, and its placement on the City and State Historic Registry, the building permit through the City of Tacoma also required approval from Landmarks, the City’s historic preservation office.

This $39 million modernization required on-site improvements including a remodeled covered play structure, a service yard, retaining walls, and various playground and pedestrian access improvements. The stormwater conveyance system consists of catch basins, yard drains, and an enclosed pipe network. 

The main entrance was reconstructed with new stairs and ADA-compliant ramps. Frontage improvements included replacement of existing pavement, curb and gutter, and sidewalk to accommodate utility and stormwater trenches in the right-of-way.

Our land surveyors initially surveyed the site in 2009. In 2013 we performed a topographic survey of the entire 6 acre site (3.75 acre school and 2.15 acre park) to locate any additional improvements to our original 2009 survey, which were primarily limited to substantial improvements to the adjoining park parcel. In 2015 we completed a boundary line adjustment to place the school and park on separate parcels.