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.
Hangzhou No.2 School of Future Sci-Tech City in China by LYCS Architecture
September 2nd, 2016 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: LYCS Architecture
Traditional primary and secondary school planning in modern Chinese cities usually provides students and children with an adult-scale campus environment at an excessively early stage. Such environment gives no help to them in coping with high educational and social pressure. Facing these phenomenon, it is the architects’ responsibility to subversively break these conventions in school planning and offer children with space of their own scale and age in which they will enjoy living and studying.
The project of Hangzhou NO.2 School of Future Sci-Tech City consists of a kindergarten, a primary school and a secondary school. The design is inspired by a random impromptu child drawing that depicts his ideal school which is like a small town full of small scale spaces and “happy” streets.Based on this inspiration, the design divided the 8000-sqm campus into 15 much smaller scale gabled volume. The scale of each volume gradually increases according to the growth of children’s age and the variation in their behaviors. A comfortable campus environment is formed by small inner courtyards within and among these volumes. Exposed stairs and corridors shaped dynamically are not only designed for circulation, but also for plenty of activity spaces. Under the gabled roofs are various common areas particularly designed for different types of gatherings, communications and social activities. As a mini society, the school enables students to build their own social consciousness with daily experience.
This project consists of 12 classrooms for kindergarten program and 27 classrooms for primary and secondary school program,which forms three U-shaped blocks and are distributed from south to north accordingly. The heights of these blocks increase incrementally to adapt different demand of scale of different departments, as well as to create a dynamic skyline. The space in-between buildings offers inner courtyards with variation of paving and landscape. A main street that satisfies youngster’s curiosity and desire of exploration is also created in between the blocks.
The kindergarten building stands as an independent U-shaped unit with open arms embracing the children. The primary school consists of four 4-floor units which form a half yard towards the Central open space. Located near main road in the city, the secondary school provides an unified facade that coordinates with the overall urban interface.
To make more intriguing activity space for students, the design offers massive rooftop activity space according to characteristics of different student groups and specialty of each roof form, such as plantation, theatre, runway, reading room and relaxation area. In addition, the corridors and public spaces are enlarged purposely to connect the second floor of all building, so as to create an extra elevated public activity area.
In this campus colored with white and grey, each of the gabled facade is designed differently in color,material and window forms, as to signify the different usage of each building. These facade painted with bright colors of yellow, green and light blue not only renders a warm and lively atmosphere, but more importantly underlines the sense of belonging and identification of different area.Additionally, five buildings within the compound are covered with bronze metal panel in order to create a different rhythm within a unified materiality.Students,especially kindergarten children can easily describe their location in the campus according to the different facades,which helps to form their own cognitive map of the campus.
Adhering to a special variation in scale, the design of this entire campus closely follows the growth and emotion of its users.The design notion of “the story of a small town” will allow students and children to enjoy their own fairy tale like campus.
About LYCS Architecture
LYCS Architecture, is an international practice based in Hangzhou and Hong Kong. As one of the most well-know new architecture and interior design office in China, the firm engages in cutting-edge architectural design as a pioneer of cultural and creative industries in China and internationally. The firm is committed to both the ever-evolving demands of architectural and urban design theory and practice as a function of our society. We are invested in the critical issues of building design, urban development, and construction in China, and the design demands that an innovative design synthesis requires for international quality.
LYCS Architecture’s design works has been acknowledged by media and press worldwide, including New York Times, TIME, Forbes, China CCTV, China Daily etc. LYCS’s has received numerous design awards internationally, including “2015 A+Awards ‘Jury Winner’ and ‘Popular Choice Winner’” , “2015 INNOVATORS 50”, “Forbes China 30-Under-30“, “50 under 50, 21st Century Innovators“, “Architectural Society of China – Young Designers Prize”, ”2014 A+Award ‘Jury Winner’” , 2013 Chinese Architectural Art ‘Young Designers Prize’, the Azure Magazine’s 2011 AZ “People’s Choice” Award, 2010 French CA’ASI “New Chinese Architectural Design Award”, to name a few. LYCS’s work was exhibited in world-class exhibitions such as 2015 & 2014 Milan Design Week, 2014 Beijing Design Week, 2013 Design Shanghai Exhibition, and the 11th,12th,14th la Biennale di Venezia in Venice, Italy.
This 40-people firm is currently developing designs that range from offices to residential, retail to cultural, and civic to master planning. These projects are located throughout China and America, including Beijing, Hongkong, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Sanya, and others. The team has breadth and depth working with such architectural firms as SHoP, Preston Scott Cohen, and Reiser+Umemoto in the United States, Bjarke Ingels Group in Denmark and Kengo Kuma & Associates in Japan, where they accumulated a wealth of practical experience.
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