Eleva School Barra is the second unit of an important network of schools in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The project is adapting a fairly horizontal commercial building to receive the school's program.
The project starts from eliminating significant area of the ground floor of the existing building to create a great covered pateo. It becomes the circulation and distribution hub of the school, a new axis that connects all the landscaping areas of the complex, with the aide of a central internal garden.
That was the biggest challenge of the project: the presence of the main block of the building to be renovated, which was an obstacle to the movement of people, ventilation and especially for the view. An obstacle to induce a sensory domain of the whole site, dividing it into several smaller areas with no connection or dialogue one to each other. The external “skin” that overlay the entire building was projected to reduce the incidence of sunlight on the east and west facades by 50%. Its design also has an eco-education character, since it reflects the original ecosystem of the region based of swamp and mangrove.
The facade project elaborated by our team offers a interpretation of this vegetation characteristic emerged rootsbased on the interpretation of two important artists: Carlos Vergara and Frans Krajcberg. The chosen collor palette respects the natural chromatic variety of this type of vegetation.
Some attention was taken in designing the landscape. Large trees were used to contribute to the shading of the facades. Mostly east and west. We also suggested the choice of fruit trees for the attraction of birds and small animals. We specified plants of the local flora, many succulents and species resistant to drought to avoid the water consumption required to maintain other species. Outer sports courts are finished with synthetic grass. All pathways are made of drainage materials.
The existing blocks were important to separate the areas to attend Kindergarten, Elementary and High school. The smaller building,by the street, it was reserved for High school. Through a walkway over the garden, High School students have access to the building of the Elementary School and vice versa, the common areas, as well as the libraries and auditoriums, are in this block. Elementary School classrooms are located on the first part of the first floor of the largest block, arranged along the east and west facades.
Between the two rows of rooms, there are leisure spaces and small study rooms, with a large living area that breaks the monotony of the field corridors.
The south part of this building is reserved exclusively for Kindergarten. For Kindergarten, we chose to locate the classrooms mainly on the ground floor, all with access to outside garden areasand playgrounds. Kindergarten has separate access, almost completely to contact with other students.