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Grimshaw reveals Australian school prototype

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AJ120 firm Grimshaw has developed designs for a new type of school in New South Wales, Australia

 Working with Australian practice BVN, the practice has designed a high-rise school for ‘future focused learning’. 

The first prototype of the designs will be realised for the Arthur Phillip High School (APHS) and Parramatta Public School in response to the growing urban density of Sydney. 

The design is based on the model of ‘Schools-within-Schools’ (SWIS), a template which delivers learning in stages rather than via age groups. Each school is comprised of small personalised units, or ‘home bases’, with around 280 primary and 330 secondary students from across a range of ages and backgrounds. 

The 14-storey scheme will accommodate 2,000 pupils at its high school and a further 1,000 in a primary school.

The 66m-tall building houses six home bases within a series of two-storey spaces which each feature stacked mezzanines and outdoor terraces. 

Each home base includes spaces for science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths. 

The primary school is contained within a lower four-storey building which curves around an outdoor learning and play space. 

Grimshaw partner Andrew Cortese, commented: ‘The school buildings act as the social infrastructure for the transformation of individuals and their communities through learning, inclusivity and outreach, with wellbeing and playfulness arising out of the integration of the physical and the environmental. 

‘The programme for the schools is one of pedagogical leadership and innovation, which is supported by Grimshaw and BVN’s design objectives for an architecture that is distinct in its response and which makes place for culture to manifest, individuals to learn and communities to emerge.’ 

BVN principal, Abbie Galvin, added: ‘The buildings are open and permeable thereby enabling connectivity and nurture.’

Australian school prototype by Grimshaw and BVN

Australian school prototype by Grimshaw and BVN

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