Post Primary School in Dublin, Ireland
The site is of a sloping terrain, with a fairly steep gradient from south-west towards the northwest of the site; in the neighbourhood of Kingswood (Tallaght) in West Dublin, Ireland.
The school is designed with adaptability as the fore-front of its priorities- so that most central spaces double in function. This is set against a clearly zoned sliding strip concept; staggered in levels in sympathy with the terrain.
A landscaped Civic Square fronts the main entrance; which opens into a well day-lit double-volume lobby with the structure of the library hovering above, and a wide main stairs spilling into the main lobby space- bringing one onto the upper floor of specialist teaching areas. This welcoming stairs doubles as a viewing area for outdoor performances on the civic square.
The General Office with the entrance reception is strategically located at the entrance area for the ease of visitors and access control at large. The administra tion spaces are also located near the entrance. The SEN areas are straddled over two strips; with its main access positioned conveniently off the main school entrance.
A central ‘street’ of central facilities are sandwiched between the flanking strips; interspersed with pockets of open courtyards. These green pockets offer visual and psychological relief; strategically placed as break-out spaces from the teaching areas; providing cross-ventilation and daylight into the deeper plan spaces. These courtyards also provide non-text signage cues for location of main stairways and social break-out spaces where students can linger and interact between classes.
The double-volume Dining/General Purpose Hall is inserted at the heart of the school, directly accessible from the entrance lobby- for the ease of important functions and events involving parents and the larger community. Skylights provide an abundance of daylight and natural ventilation into the dining spaces; whilst the double-volume translate the space into a versatile, future-proofed multi-functioning area.
Classrooms are buffered additionally by the double-storey ‘strip’ of specialist teaching areas from the noisier areas like Dining/General Purpose, PE Hall and the break-out from Lecture Rooms. The classrooms enjoy direct access to open gardens; so that teaching could be conducted outdoors during summer months. Students will also benefit from a sense of ownership over their ‘learning gardens’.