CREATIVE CANOPIES - PRESCHOOL COMPETITION, OROMIA REGION, ET (2020 COMPETITION)
Creative Canopies From afar, creative canopies are a visually explosive center of attraction with its colorful roof and shades: a learning center for the community, an active place for interactions: where the elderly meet for a chat under a tree, where young women and men get a platform for trainings and classes; where children are in a safe, inspirational and inclusive environment. - As a tree protects all life under its umbrella, here the school unites all generations to actively discuss the future of their children under a lightweight and inexpensive roof. Entering the compounds, a designated outdoor space + fig tree for informal meetings invites people to actively engage right from the start until construction. The community will collaborate with Abay Ethiopia (the NGO) providing the available local materials like straw, stone, clay, and labor, creating an environmentally sound and sustainable place. From there, a path leads to the different clusters for classes + common activities, lined by a shaded corridor with a fruit tree in front of each classroom; vegetable gardens, a covered playground, and dense green areas and sanitary facilities follow the same grid. The 200m2 clusters allow different combinations and a cost-efficient way to plan the different phases on site. Its basic geometry provides intimate, secure spaces, east-west-facing openings for a maximal thermal comfort during daytime and evening classes. A balance between natural, locally available materials (grass and straw) and longevity + healthy environments is combined in the local, traditional wall construction technique includes a wooden framework and different types of woven fiber across / reed mats. Where necessary, layers of mud and earth can be used as cladding and thus will provide a better thermally moderate climate, and act as sound barrier between different rooms. Rural schools often lack light, our interiors are simple but very bright depending on the color of the fabric, each room with a different theme - during the day, the colors are slowly changing as the sun moves. The in between spaces allow smaller playgrounds and water run offs during heavy rains, plants to protect the soil stability and a sanitation system with a circular design concept to later use homemade biogas if needed. It’s appearance carries a sense for play with colors, textures, materials, - all on its creative canopies.