About the project
Architecture for schools tends to be focused on surveillance and homogenization. This is not the case for Reggio Explora School. Its design is conceived for children to experience social, environmental, material, and cultural complexity. It is a multiverse that promotes the coexistence of diverse climates, situations, and aesthetics that daily lives consist of. The school is conceived as a vertical bottom-up progression that stacks a ground floor, linked to the terrain, where classrooms for younger students are placed. On the second floor students in intermediate levels coexist with water and soil tanks that nourish an indoor forest reaching the upper levels under a greenhouse structure. Classrooms for older students are organized around this inner forest as in a small village. This distribution of uses implies an ongoing maturity process that is translated into the growing capacity of students to explore the school ecosystem on their own.
The second floor is conceived as the main social gathering space of the school. More than 26 feet high, in the empty space around the roots of the inner forest, the big central space of around 5,000 square feet provides a cosmopolitical agora where vegetation, water, and soil frame a changing program of gymnasium, art classroom, conference and events hall, and gathering space for school assemblies.
Services, waste management, and storage are part of the processes the architecture of the school provides access to. Thanks to this material-transparency dynamic inserted in the circulation system of the school, students and the educational community can grow and evolve around common discussions.
Andrés Jaque / Office for Political Innovation
Team: Roberto González García, Luis González Cabrera, Alberto Heras, Paola Pardo-Castillo, Juan David Barreto, Inês Barros, Elise Durand, Bansi Mehta