Announcing Construction of new academic building for Girls Program

ASHEVILLE, NC — French Broad River Academy, an independent middle school with dual programs for boys and girls, announces plans for construction of a new academic building for its girls program on its South Campus in Asheville.

new building for girls program
Aerial view of plan

The project will establish an expanded and permanent home for FBRA’s Girls Program on the 3.3-acre riverside campus just north of downtown Asheville. It is the latest phase of growth for the middle school founded in 2009 that combines rigorous academics with learning through outdoor adventure, service, and travel.

“We are thrilled to move forward with this project for our Girls Program,” said Will Yeiser, FBRA Executive Director and Co-Founder. “Despite some setbacks from the pandemic and delays in acquiring a final parcel for the site, we are back on track and poised to begin construction.”

The phased project includes a new academic building with space for classrooms, an assembly and performance area, an art room, teacher workspace, and administrative offices. The school is working with the team of Beverly Grant, Red House Architects, and Civil Design Concepts to implement best practices for sustainable design and energy efficiency for the project. The new building will replace modular classroom units and anchor the school’s South Campus, which also includes outdoor learning spaces, the Maria Noakes Outdoor Center, and easy access to the river.

new building for girls program
Front view
new building for girls program
Rear view

A groundbreaking ceremony for the project will be held this fall with construction beginning in early 2025. The FRBA project will coincide with construction of the $32 million fully-funded Woodfin Greenway and Whitewater Wave Project, a world-class, engineered wave for kayakers and surfers planned along the river between FBRA’s South Campus and North Campus, which is home to the school’s Boys Program. 

“The French Broad serves as a classroom for our students, whether they’re building their tandem canoeing skills, utilizing scientific method through water quality experiments, or mapping the watershed,” said Yeiser. “To have our two campuses linked by a greenway coupled with a whitewater wave feature exceeds any vision I could have ever imagined for our river-based outdoor program.”

Celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, French Broad River Academy was established in 2009 as an all-boys middle school. The school added a Girls Program in 2015. The school integrates rigorous academics with outdoor adventure, service learning, and international travel to help students become confident, compassionate leaders, ready to take on the world.

new building for girls program