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The Tree-House School: sustainable and modular educational building for the new post-covid era by Valentino Gareri

Project name:
The Tree-House School
Architecture firm:
Valentino Gareri
Location:
Concept/Speculative
Tools used:
Rhinoceros 3D, Autodesk 3ds Max, Adobe Photoshop
Principal architect:
Valentino Gareri
Design team:
N/A
Built area:
4000 m²
Site area:
N/A
Design year:
2020
Completion year:
N/A
Collaborators:
N/A
Visualization:
Winston Wu / Mirco Bianchini
Status:
Concept - Design
Typology:
Education, School

The Italian architect Valentino Gareri has proposed a sustainable and modular educational building for the new post-covid era. 

Architect's statement: The pandemic has highlighted the importance of designing buildings where the relationship with nature is reinforced and where outdoor and indoor spaces are more connected each other. In these context, primary importance should be given to educational buildings. Around the world, in these weeks many schools have just re-opened or are going to re-open soon after the great lockdown.

circular school building surrounded with green landscape Visualization by Winston Wu / Mirco Bianchini

Many protocols have been developed by National Governments in order to make the return to school possible, even in buildings which were not designed to facilitate physical distancing.

The schools of the future will have to be designed under a new point of view: rather than just considering criteria of sustain-ability, they will have to embrace the ability-to-sustain the new condition where the pandemic put the entire society in.

Site Plan Sketch Drawing Site Plan 

Moreover, thanks to the possibility given by the ‘smart working’, one of the post-covid consequences has been the relocation of mass of people from big cities to less dense areas. This phenomenon puts the accent on the importance of requalifying those areas, that have been forgotten so far.

In these circumstances, the concept model of the school of the future has to be enlarged to a bigger scale: we should start thinking about educational buildings where several schools are combined (kindergarten, primary and secondary school) still maintaining their own independency.

Not only this. Community center, an urban plaza, a café and a library should be included and offered as spaces for the entire community: the building is operable 24h and becomes an important civic reference and the begin and opportunity for the requalification of suburbs and rural areas.

School with big courtyard garden Visualization by Winston Wu / Mirco Bianchini

Considering these aspects, the proposed design provides a modular educational center that can include all the phases of the educational process: Kindergarten, Primary and Secondary schools.

All the required spaces are fitted into two rings: the massing articulation allows to create two courtyards and an additional usable roof.

The classrooms are located in circle and have connections to the courtyards and the outdoor landscape. Each module, of 55 sqm, is made of cross laminated timber and corresponds to an ideal classroom of 20/25 students connected by a central corridor.

Classroom Visualization by Winston Wu / Mirco Bianchini 

The building is designed as a ‘tree-house’ and it is distributed through multiple levels, where also roofs are usable and where indoor and outdoor spaces are combined allowing high flexibility for educational activities.

The main idea is to create a school that is suspended and immerse in the nature, as a house tree, where the relationship with nature is physically and visibly increased.

This is possible thanks to the faceted façade, made by the alternation of solid timber panels and glazing panels. The circular perimeter allows to block the direct sunlight with the opaque panels and get diffuse light and free view through the transparent ones.

architecture diagram Reference 

concept diagram

Concept Diagrams

Courtyard view Courtyard view 

Sustainable Section Sustainable Section 

Program Diagram Program Diagram 

Modularity drawing Modularity 

Facade concept Views Facade concept Views 

Functions Flexibility 

Entry View drawing Entry View 


By Naser N. Ibrahim

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