The newly constructed school was driven by an informed client asking for change, creating a shift in learning models to establish small learning communities (SLC) along five guiding principles. The building materialised as four independent SLCs connected to a central commons campus. The programme was distilled down to 13 spatial types defined by size, volume, number of occupants and services, and applied across a matrix to illustrate how they could support over 150 different subject orientated programme spaces.
The design intent was for the building(s) to adapt over time spatially and identity-wise. The process included such scenario-based design techniques as a ‘Day in the life’ and ‘Powerful Moments’ to help capture how the building would be used and would need to accommodate change in usage patterns, high school programs and curricula. As an example, this led to creating a ‘school without corridors’ as spaces between ‘classrooms’ get used as open learning and project labs architecturally delineated through flooring materials, columns and ceiling soffits. Both interior and exterior graphics are able to change easily to support the ability for the SLCs to redefine themselves.
Image credits: Images courtesy of DLR Group