schmidt hammer lassen has been selected to complete the new island school in hong kong, china.working alongside local office thomas chow architects, the danish firm’s proposal will replace the existing and outdated building, originally constructed in 1967. the project is envisioned as a sustainable learning environment, housing state of the art facilities across its 28,000 square meter site.
its generous provision of green spaces ensures a strong relationship is established with the surrounding landscape. after the announcement of the winning design team, a co-creation process with the school will begin to create a design concept to meet the client’s specific requirements.
internally, programs are arranged around a plaza which runs through the main arrival level of the school, linking it to a central atrium. rising through the heart of the structure, this open volume frames surrounding views of the green mountainous landscape and the city’s distinctive skyline.
classrooms and work areas are imagined as flexible zones, where different spatial configurations can be deployed: divided into smaller spaces or opened up to connect with other parts of the scheme. the sports and cultural facilities will be used by the public outside of the school’s normal opening hours, thus ensuring a strong connection with the local community.
the structure’s cantilevered façades create shade, sheltering its occupants from the region’s hot sun, while the reclined elevations also allow daylight into internal volumes without causing overheating. the lush vegetation also helps cool the building, ensuring a stable and comfortable internal climate.
‘the atrium is the heart of the school,’ states bjarne hammer, founding partner at schmidt hammer lassen architects. ‘with its balconies, hanging greenery and gardens, it functions as an informal social gathering space where the students can meet and interact. the greenery creates a relaxing atmosphere and contributes positively to the learning environment.’
architect team: thomas chow architects, schmidt hammer lassen architects
client: english schools foundation
area: 28,000 sqm (301,389 sqf)
competition: 2014, 1st prize, international competition
engineer: AECOM aurecon
landscape architect: urbis