FUTURE SCHOOL, MARASASSOUM, SENEGAL
INTRODUCTION: The Design Brief is to build a school which provides vocational courses in Marsassoum, a small town in the region of Senegal using locally sourced materials and easy to build techniques which can be adopted by the local people.
Keeping this in mind, for the proposed Future School the key point we have considered is the environment we create which not only benefits formal learning but informal learning as well through the interactions they have. The ultimate goal is to create a safe environment for growing adults using sustainable planning solutions in a way that would bring the entire community together for the accomplishment of the final product- The Future School, as we like to call it.
PLANNING: Considering the brief given to us, our initial task was to configure a module that would help maximize the utility of space to fit in all the requirements. The module selected is a 6.3 x 1O meter rectangle which is mostly replicated throughout.
The next focus is on planning. An inward planning concept with the existing tree in the center is adopted that creates a space both safe and comfortable for students. The central courtyard gives a sense of arrival and also acts as a gathering space for the students to play, interact and share their thoughts.
Circulation and connectivity among spaces is gradual with transition spaces that goes from open to semi-covered to covered. The various open and semi-covered areas serve as a medial space for dispersing as well as merging. Semi covered pocket spaces are also provided between the cluster of each classroom which can also be utilized for group gatherings and activities that extends outside school. Another feature we have added for in the school is the studying loft. This is for those students who requires quieter environment for independent and interactive learning.
SUSTAINABILITY: We have integrated simple sustainable concepts in the overall design. Like perforated walls for ventilation, high sloping roof to mitigate indoor temperature and enhance internal illumination. This also prevents humidity stagnation and enables better run- off of rain. Orientation of the building is also done towards N-S to maximize shade with added temperature moderation achieved through courtyard effect.
When it comes to material selection, easily accessible materials like mud and bamboo are used as per brief, but by enhancing its strength and durability simple, beautiful and resilient structure can be created.