Can we teach kids to appreciate, love, and respect nature from an early age?
Valentino Gareri has a vision for a sustainable and modular educational building for the post-COVID era: the tree-house school.
He says, the pandemic has highlighted the importance of designing buildings with connected outdoor and indoor spaces that strengthen our relationship with nature.
Valentino believes that's even more important for educational buildings. Around the world, schools faced prolonged lockdowns. Governments had to develop protocols to make the return to school possible, even in buildings that were not designed to allow physical distancing.
Future schools could be designed differently: he proposes they be sustainable, flexible and embrace "the ability to sustain the new condition the pandemic has put society in".
Moreover, Valentino thinks that post-covid, thanks to "smart working", more people will relocate from big cities to less dense areas, emphasizing the importance of requalifying those places.
The Tree-House School, made of natural materials with low-cost construction techniques, would combine educational buildings (kindergarten, primary, and secondary school) while maintaining their independence. Besides, a community center, an urban plaza, a café, and a library could be included in the scheme, to offer spaces for the entire community. A building as an essential civic reference for suburbs and rural areas.
In this modular educational center, all spaces would fit into 2 rings with 2 courtyards and a usable roof. Made of cross-laminated timber, the modules of 55 sqm, would create classrooms for about 20 students. The school of the future would be flexible, immersed in nature & energy-sufficient. It would have several sustainable devices such as rainwater collectors, natural cross-ventilation, photovoltaic panels, wind turbines located on the highest roof.
Sustainability would become part of the educational experience through the building itself.
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? Tree-House School / © Valentino Gareri
- Publication date
- 22 March 2021