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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
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.

St. Augustine School in Kitsilano, Canada by Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

 
April 14th, 2016 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

The Oblates of Mary Immaculate founded St. Augustine School over one hundred years ago, at which time the school shared quarters with St. Augustine Church in a domed, three-storey, brick building located in the Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver. In 1951, the original school was demolished and replaced with what was to be a temporary, single-storey, wood-frame building. Sixty-four years later, a new three-storey, 300 student, 4,200 square metre, red brick-clad school and child care facility that features fifteen classrooms, a learning commons, multipurpose spaces and allowance for a new gymnasium occupies the compact site.

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

  • Architects: Acton Ostry Architects Inc.
  • Project: St. Augustine School
  • Location: Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver, Canada
  • Photography: Michael Elkan
  • Client: The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Vancouver; St. Augustine’s Parish
  • Design Team:

    • Principal-in-charge: Russell Acton, ARCHITECT AIBC AAA SAA OAA FRAIC
    • Project Lead: Mark Simpson ARCHITECT AIBC MRAIC Peng
  • Team: Warren Schmidt ARCHITECT AIBC MRAIC, Nathaniel Straathof ARCHITECT AIBC LEED AP
  • Collaborators:

    • Structural Engineer: Wicke Herfst Structural Engineers
    • Mechanical Engineer: Integral Group (Formerly Cobalt Group) – Mechanical
    • Electrical Engineer: MMM Group Ltd.
    • Landscape Architect: Durante Kreuk Ltd
    • Contractor: Yellowridge Construction Ltd.
  • Software used: VectorWorks

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

  • Code: BR Thorson Consulting Ltd.
  • Acoustic: RWDI Engineers
  • Envelope: Morrison Hershfield Ltd.
  • Geotechnical: GeoPacific Consultants Ltd.
  • Interior Design: Acton Ostry Architects
  • Specifications: Core Group Civil Consultants Ltd.
  • Gross Floor Area: 45,000 sf (4,181 sm)
  • Construction start: February 2014
  • Completion: October 2015
Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

The new school is clad with brick masonry and provides a symbolic link to the existing St. Augustine Church + Parish, located one block to the east, and pays homage to the original church and school building. The masonry finish, inspired by the work of Alvaar Aalto and a children’s flip book, is a playful collage comprised of three shades of red brick arranged in six varying patterns. The red brick cladding rises directly out of the finished grade. Window openings are detailed as deep, incised cuts that feature traditional brick sills and dramatic brick-faced sloping sills. Three recessed buff-brick cruciform patterns modestly mark the building as a Catholic institution in the surrounding multi-family neighbourhood. Freestanding brick walls delineate and anchor the school to the site.

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

The main entrance and child care feature folding steel canopies that are supported on slender cruciform columns. The folded planes reference the form of a nun’s habit; the top clad in dark standing seam metal and the underside finished with dazzling white stucco.

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Interior finishes include golden-hued maple paneling and light blue flooring inspired from a painting of Mary crushing a serpent. Two glazed, south facing towers feature vivid green stairs snaking to the outside and upon which the children symbolically stomp the serpent as they rush out to play.

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Blue coloured glazing symbolizes Mary and recalls the stained glass at St. Augustine Church and identifies three key components: the main entrance to the school, a breezeway that acts as a gateway to the school grounds and a tall towering window located at the corner of the site that symbolically links St. Augustine School to the neighbouring St. Augustine Church + Parish.

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Michael Elkan

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

Image Courtesy © Acton Ostry Architects Inc.

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Category: School

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