The new Amistad Elementary is designed to embrace the surrounding areas by reaching out across the site to connect the civic environment at the southeast with the residential neighborhood to the northwest. To juxtapose the existing Amistad Elementary, the new design features a central public zone and ‘mixing chamber’. This allows maximum daylight and views to all learning spaces, along with creating outdoor environments that are inviting, safe and secure.
The building is designed to improve the arrival experience for vehicles, buses, and pedestrians. A well-defined pedestrian corridor has been created by relocating the existing parent drop off. The scale of a 2-story building is brought down at the entry with the single story administration and library, greeting those that arrive. Learning is brought into the 21st century by creating opportunities to teach outside of the classroom including features such as a learning stair at the entry, indoor small group instruction and outdoor learning environments.
The landscape expresses an implied connection between the entry courtyard and playgrounds, which enliven the public zone. View corridors are created at the classroom wings where small group instruction takes place, allowing daylight to flow into the corridors.
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