Elgin Academy launched the 37,000 square foot Harold D Rider Family Media, Science, and Fine Arts Center with an explicit goal of creating a high-performance building to serve its students and the greater Elgin arts community. Designed by DLA Architects, Ltd. and completed in 2008 by Pepper Construction, the Rider Center was the first new construction on Elgin Academy’s campus in nearly 40 years. The building was named for long-time Academy trustee Harold Rider whose wife and four sons all graduated from Elgin Academy. Built with funds raised in a community-wide capital campaign (including a generous grant from the City of Elgin), this 37,000 square foot “green” building achieved gold-level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. This impressive four-story academic space contains the Kimball Street Theatre, a black box event venue used not only for Elgin Academy productions but also rented to various local community groups and arts organizations. In addition to the school’s library, the building also houses Upper School math classrooms, science and computer labs, PS-12 fine arts classrooms, a videography lab and studio, and the school’s Admission and Marketing & Communication offices. The contemporary design of this brick and glass structure features a unique outdoor patio/balcony space and a panoramic view of the surrounding area from its wall of observation windows on the top floor.