Program requirements and preconditions
This project is part of the political concerns of the municipality of Santa Marta and the Carulla Foundation to improve the educational and nutritional conditions of the communities displaced by violence, and settled on the outside perimeter of the city. It is meant to develop infrastructure to improve the conditions of early childhood and low-income neighborhoods to the most vulnerable population between ages of 0 to 5 years old. These areas are characterized by violence and lack of public infrastructure.
The preschool as a mechanism of social inclusion
The challenge as architects in a context like Colombia is to develop projects that can generate social inclusion. The problem lies not only in designing and constructing buildings in deteriorated areas, but to activate new forms of use, ownership and pride in the communities. The value of architecture lies not only in itself but on what it produces. To define these arguments it is necessary to extend our gaze beyond the architecture itself. Architecture cannot only relate to itself, but widening our gaze and finding new ways to operate, to resist and be better equipped to meet the current conditions.
Justification of the urban integration of the proposal
The image of the building refers to the geography of the region, rather than an object. We intend to develop an architectural landscape building that is related to the geography and topography, where it is inserted. We find rules of organization to develop projects that promote a „new natural contract” by reformulating the relationship between figure and background, an approach in search of alternatives capable of promoting that “new natural contract” in tune with a landscape and a natural order.
General construction features of the building
The buildings have a bearing wall system in concrete, easily implemented and of rapid construction. These walls act as support membranes removing the columns and beams of a traditional supporting system, allowing overhangs of 4 meters at the end of the classroom. These walls are covered with ceramic elements (Venetian mosaics) which contributes to the maintenance and cleaning of the building. The building system allows the construction of 1,450 m2 in seven months, typifying or modulating the panels to be reused in other models.
The project aims to sustainability on several ways to improve the urban context of the population producing conscience for the future and present generations, trying to create a social and an ethical change that would cover a development model for the surrounding population.
The project has buildable and habitable conditions such as heat-regulated system through the high thermal efficiency facade retaining wall system with natural ventilation, which prevents the use of air conditioning reducing energy consumption, not only in the Kindergarten normal maintenance, but also the wall construction system reduces energy consumption on site, the materials used minimize the amount of waste from the work by lowering the environmental impact. The orientation of the building is south-north, its architectural configuration allows natural ventilation and natural lighting. The project includes areas with floral decoration, gardens for urban agriculture to contribute and to improve environmental quality and economic landscape of the urban environment and population.
It optimizes the use of water by using saving devices, recycling rain and waste water for use in bathrooms, and crops. Should it be additional water, it can benefit the surrounding community. Waste recycling is done from the source so it could be delivered to the collection system by lowering the cost of this service, and at the same time generating revenue to be used in the garden, in the case of the sale of recyclable materials. The waste produced in the kitchen isused to generate compost used later to crop areas. The project is socially committed not only to be a garden to support social welfare in early childhood, but also to support agriculture through urban families by promoting the use of natural resources with an economic purpose and remuneration for personal use.