Educadromo – Description / text

This project has a defined design brief and site but it’s our client’s goal is to build several similar schools. This project is thus replicable - it remains valid in a dense urban fabric, an urban expansion area or a rural area - and adaptable - it remains functionally, constructively and energetically sound in a school of 12, 24 or 48 classrooms.

Instead of designing from a given context, we searched for the fundamentals of a school's design brief and its relationship with the outside world. We started by analysing the proximity relations for each space - a classroom must be close to other classrooms and an art workshop, it must have direct access to the playground albeit protected from the outside... and so forth - till we arrived at a functional diagram comprising all proximity relations: a “ring of spaces” that encircles the playground - the heart of the school. The ring has numerous functional advantages – child safety and supervision in the playground, usually assured by a fence, is obviated by the building itself in a subtle yet more effective fashion -, constructive advantages - the circle is the figure that contains the largest area within the smallest perimeter and so we get more space with less material - and energy advantages - the circulation works as a thermal buffer and all main spaces are sheltered from the sun.

The circle is also the only figure without any orientation or hierarchy between its parts which means the school's identity is equally impacting on disparate contexts. Eccentricity between outer and inner circles allows accommodating spaces with such different widths as the classrooms - 8 m - and the outdoor sports ground - 16 m.

3D Model



Bengo, Angola
Built Area
1865 m²
Site Area
4443 m²

Vasco Correia and Patrícia Sousa
Tiago Garrido