Sustainable Modern School Planned for Rural Mexico

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By Erika Heet / Published by Dwell
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Designed by the firm AT103, the award-winning design is meant to serve as a model for sustainable educational design.

The Mexico City–based firm AT103 will soon break ground on an elementary school that is based on a model of sustainability both in form and function. Called Kokokali, a hybridization of the Nahuatl kokone (children) and kali (casa, or house), the school layout springs from an organic, flowing ribbon and is crafted from compacted adobe bricks, concrete, and glass—relatively simple and inexpensive materials. The school will be located in the community of San Andrés Payuca, Puebla, and received a bronze award from the 2014 Latin America Holcim Awards this month.  

Light will stream through the pathways between classrooms at Kokokali school.

 

A core element of the design scheme is a series of outdoor classrooms and play areas.

A rendering of the elevation plan shows how the concrete forms will envelop the indoor and outdoor rooms.

The model of the school shows the layout, based on a simple ribbon.

The model's elevation shows the school plan taking shape.