Nanjing School of Foreign Languages, Fangshan Campus / GLA Design
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Fangshan Wisdom City: Nanjing Foreign Language School, Fangshan Campus
On the side of the Fangshan Scenic Site in Nanjing, the Fangshan Campus of the Nanjing School of Foreign Languages stands quietly, wrapped in red bricks and adjacent to Nanguang College to the south and the California Urban Community to the north. It is an international school that includes a primary school, a middle school, a regular high school and an international high school. Although it was put into service for a short time, it received unusual attention.
As a key middle school in Nanjing, the school has strict campus management and is not open to the public on a daily basis. Parents often throng the main entrance guard room with all kinds of requests. They often ask about teachers, tuition, and enrollment plans, but often get nothing. At this point, they usually make one last request: please let us come in and see what the school is like, okay? This unmet demand always makes people wonder, “What kind of school is being built here?”
Build a “Public School, Art Garden, Square Mountain, and City of Wisdom”
The idea “to extrapolate the quality of education from the campus environment” is actually not unreasonable. On the one hand, contemporary campus design is moving from “tradition” – the shaping of places and spaces – to “guidance” – the exploration and restoration of teaching concepts and educational models. On the other hand, the teaching and management experience of a large number of front-line educators in kindergarten, elementary school, middle school and high school is of great practical importance for the planning and the design of our campus. Faced with the collision between innovative thoughts and actual management, this is the starting point of the design to find a balance between site and function.
“What kind of school to build? “, to some extent, not only shows what kind of material and technical conditions we have, but also reflects the concept of education we believe in. While building a pedagogy tailored to specific schools, the design emphasizes a future-oriented learning space. As a brand new continuation of Nanjing Foreign Language School and its campus context in Fangshan, this design extracts the concept of “public school, art garden, square mountain and wisdom city” in order to deeply explore the deep context of the first class middle school, following its vein of development and school philosophy.
Stick to cultural repositories and campus location
Among the four key words “public school”, “art garden”, “square mountain” and “city of wisdom”, “public school” refers to the context of the campus. This international school extracts and restores the humanistic spirit, campus space and site scale of the traditional Western public school, and integrates them into contemporary Chinese multiculture, thus reproducing a “contemporary public school”. In the design, red brick throughout the campus of Nanjing Foreign Language School is used as the main color of the campus, while paying homage to the history of Nanjing Foreign Language School and also conveying a strong university style.
In terms of location and environmental positioning, the design fully respects the “square mountain” topography, creates the integration of two axes, and creates unstructured indoor and outdoor learning spaces with different elevations, making the campus un not only a treasure trove for heirloom knowledge, but also a gathering place for literature and art.
Sewing an organic set
From the experience of daily use of campus space by students and teachers, the design creates many small-scale user-friendly and belonging spaces in the form of building courtyards. The large adult campus is divided by an organic courtyard division into sharing center groups with various characteristics, including all types of functional sharing center group, elementary school group, middle school group, high school group, sports group and life group. Each group is perpendicular to the north-south axis of the double axis, which has enough daylight. The view of the central water and the node space, enclosed by the groups, is also amiable and pleasant.
The “art garden” open to the public includes the STEM center, the liberal arts center, the administrative office, the book exchange center and other functions, which are taken from the design and arranged in the plaza main entrance to the campus with a “semi-open ring”, forming the learning campus, the clearing house and the school’s image display window. The “circular building”, as the vertical point of the other axis, resolves the conflict between the entrance image of the vertical urban main road and the layout of the internal teaching group.
Due to its high independence and daily pick-up and drop-off characteristics, the half-day elementary school is arranged on the north side of the large plot, close to the dormitory and secondary entrance on the west side of the campus. , and has separate sports fields and facilities. In order to respond to the possibility of more communication between students of the same age in scientific high school and international high school, they are grouped into architectural ensembles in order to share the vitality of the exchange courtyard outside the independent teaching courtyard. While facing the central courtyard of the waterscape, the middle school department shares the learning street with the high school department to jointly create diverse learning and exchange opportunities and places. These spatial gestures are at the heart of the “city-wisdom”.
Futuristic space proposal
Each department forms the core courtyard of different ages with the structured learning space, and the unstructured learning space becomes the core shared between the courses. Classes of different age groups can be either separated or joined together, with strong adaptability. The corridor is moderately widened and integrated into various functions, combining the courtyard and the landscape of the central water system, forming an interesting place for learning and communication. The applicability of the different themes is integrated into the campus.
The campus is divided into north and south functions, with dynamic and static separation and non-interference. Considering the sound interference of the playground with the residential area on the north side of the plot, the main sports field and the college gymnasium are arranged in the southwest corner of the plot, while the sections elementary and middle school are separated by the central waterscape, and the small theater on the west side are connected to the sharing center on the east side.
At the top of the campus building, the modern and concise dark-colored metal box is an iterative innovation of the traditional pitched roof, and the base is complemented by a warm white stone base, which adopts the more classical architectural form and language and eternal that has withstood the test of The Times to form an elegant, humanistic and rational campus tone.