Info & Images: Courtesy schmidt hammer lassen architects
schmidt hammer lassen architects once again lay down an international winning entry for yet another educational institute, proving yet another progressive path that supports a new way of teaching and learning.
Spread across sq. m., the new island school building is a sustainable learning landscape with state-of-the-art facilities to support optimal learning conditions.
Designed by Danish schmidt hammer lassen architects and Hong Kong based Thomas Chow Architects, the first awarded winning international competition entry proposes a significant visual connection between the site and the green mountain landscape, the Hong Kong city skyline and waterfront.
Starting from inside out, the internal functions of the building are organized around a learning plaza, which runs through the main arrival level of the school and connects to the atrium. With its balconies, hanging greenery and gardens, the atrium functions as an informal social gathering space, where the students can meet and interact.
The shape of the building, with cantilevered facades creates shade, where needed. In other places, the facade leans back to allow daylight into the learning spaces without causing overheating. The gardens and the greenery also help to cool the building, contributing to a good indoor climate, and to the learning environment, as a whole. The atrium in turn, creates good lighting conditions that minimize the use of artificial light within the building.
Classrooms are designed to be flexible learning spaces, which can be set up in different ways to support various learning situations. The rooms can be divided into smaller spaces or opened up to connect with other parts of the school.
Going beyond the role of an educational institute, the proposed design has a strong connection to the local community, with sports and cultural facilities that can be used by the public outside the normal opening hours of the school.
Given the success of institutional design by schmidt hammer lassen architects with the RIBA award-winning City of Westminster College in London, the Thor Heyerdahl College in Norway and the IBC Innovation Factory in Denmark among others, the new island school, Hong Kong promises to be another hands-down winner.