Collaborations with NGO’s has given us the opportunity to work on Educational buildings. These projects are often met with very strict budgets and standards. As a result of this, we constantly negotiate program to create other points of interest. For example, we do this by adding elements of play or non program items. Consequently this enables users to enjoy the experience of the building in different ways. It is these non-program items that make the building more than just an educational institute. As a result of these elements, the building is able to create new learning opportunities for children or its users.
The needs of educational institutes is constantly changing. From teaching methods, to multi use of classrooms. Flexibility is key in the design of these buildings. It has to not only respond to the current needs of the program but also foreseeable needs of the future. To allow for the building to expand and adapt, the design of the structure needs to enable this.
We enhance the learning environment by giving the building a sense of identity and community. Spaces are open to interpretation and adaptation. The success in the design of our educational buildings has been in that they give the end user a sense of pride and ownership.
We place immense value in the inputs of end users, staff and collaborators. By designing intelligently even modest budgets can go a long way.
At the Etania Green School a lightweight module for a classroom floats over shipping containers that serve as foundations. Because the classrooms are raised from the ground, they are well protected from any flooding and will be naturally cool by capturing the river breeze. The building’s openness and integration with the site creates new learning opportunities for the students.
The Mumbai Artist Retreat is conceptualised as a community space. It is an art lab of sorts, that aims to bring together art, ecology and society. One of the buildings on the retreat is an Artist workshop. The completely self sufficient pavilion is a 12m x 10m “tropical shed” with two roofs that are each six meter high. Two solar panelled skylights chop off the pyramid shaped roofs on the top.
The Magic Bus Learning Pavilion is an interactive building used as a gathering space and play area for underprivileged children who are deprived of places to play in the city. However with a log bridge, a Jacob’s ladder, climbing ladders and a suspension / rope bridge, the building is much more than that. It is a continuation of the challenge course of the Magic Bus Outdoor Learning Campus.
The Biodiverity Training Institute is located near Sikkim’s capital Gangtok. Sited on a slope, it faces world third highest mountain, the Kanchenjunga. The design of the building is compact with a small footprint. It makes use of solar energy, local vegetation and wind. The divers vegetation of Sikkim will become an integral part of the building so that it becomes an education instrument in its own right
The proposed Butterfly Reserve in Sikkim aims to be a celebration of the butterfly, found in abundance in the region. Today however their habitat is being threatened. As a butterfly perches on tendril legs on a flower barely touching what it feeds on, so the interventions in this sensitive ecological landscape are designed to reduce the interference with the site.
The design proposal for the School of Planning and Architecture in Delhi, is rooted in the belief that space for recreation is essential in a city. The design of the ‘Open Campus’ uses multidirectional building blocks, giving one the possibility to move from one arbitrary spot in to another arbitrary spot in the master plan through numerous different routes.