Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Parque São Bento Public School in São Bento, Brazil by bvy arquitetos
May 24th, 2011 by Sumit Singhal
This public school, for 6-10 years old students, is located at Residencial Parque São Bento, a social housing district built by Cohab, the Campinas City Housing Department. The district includes 551 detached houses of 45m2 each, and the school occupies the only public square in the neighborhood. Parque São Bento is 15km away from the city centre of Campinas, the third biggest city of São Paulo State, with 1 million inhabitants.
The building integrates a government school construction program using precast concrete, coordinated by FDE [Foundation for the Development of the Education, São Paulo State Government]. The precast structure ensures the quality and durability of the school building, and allows implementation in shorter periods compared to conventional building systems. The building design is based on a rigid logic, determined by the modulation of the prefabricated structure and by the economy of materials. The design takes advantage of the structural logic by using concrete beams as shading elements for the classrooms and as part of the school’s visual identity.
The school project – as established by the FDE – includes 15 classrooms, 3 multipurpose rooms, cafeteria, indoor sports area, restrooms and an administrative area with isolated access. This program was organized, according to function, into two main blocks: one as a teaching area, the other as administrative and play areas. This separation allows for the independent use of play areas during the weekends, isolating the closed classrooms. It is important that the school be opened to the community, as it is the only public facility in the neighborhood.
The building has only two floors, the maximum height allowed in the region. The existing topography defined the gap between the ground floor of the two blocks. A set of ramps was designed to connect the two buildings and enclose the central courtyard. The use of ramps ensures universal accessibility to all rooms within the school and eliminates the need for elevators, reducing construction costs and maintenance.
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