Garden in the Urban Forest
CRLand NSFL is a 54,000 m² elementary and middle school campus, comprising regular and specialized classrooms, library, gymnasium, indoor swimming pool, auditorium, dormitory, along with dining halls, and dedicated playgrounds. Located in Shenzhen’s newly developed DaChong neighborhood, the campus is conceived as a sweeping, horizontal garden that stands in sharp contrast with the ever denser, ever more vertical urban environment it serves.
To achieve this low-rise condition, Studio Link-Arc’s design uses the natural slope of the site to top the large program volumes of the gym, pool, dining halls and auditorium with a series of terraced platforms, which become a new ground for dedicated teaching spaces and playgrounds. This configuration allows an unrestrained linear organization of all teaching spaces without the need to develop the building vertically. The design uses a three-story bar arrangement of staggered classrooms that sweep the site from east to west, chasing every available square inch of sunlight penetrating the surrounding concrete forest. In return, the sinuous motion of classroom ribbons generates a fluid sequence of outdoor spaces tailored to the specific needs of each teaching area. The dynamic, elongated courtyards of the specialized and middle schools turn into enclosed, protective courtyards for the primary school and library, or conversely, open into vast grounds used for physical activities.
The project intentionally breaks with conventional school design – which divides the campus into buildings and functional zones – in favor of a sectional organization of spaces that maximizes access to green space and daylight for each classroom independent of their location. This strategy imposes a perpetual tweaking of the vertical arrangement of spaces, which generates endless sectional variations and creates a highly diverse compendium of spatial conditions for play, recreation, and interaction.
Project Name: CRLand NSFL School
Project Location: Shenzhen, China
Project Area: 54,200 square meters / 583,400 square feet
Program: Elementary and Middle School, Library, Gym, Indoor Pool, Dormitory, Playgrounds, and Underground Parking
Client: China Resources Land Limited
Design Architect: Yichen Lu, Razvan Voroneanu
Project Team: Ching-Tsung Huang, Chunqi Fang, Hyunjoo Lee, Dongyul Kim, Mariarosa Doardo, Yihong Deng, Jing Liu, Hyungsun Choi, Viviana Wang, Jialin Yuan, Wenyun Qian
Architect of Record: Architectural Design and Research Institute of Guangdong Province
Structural Engineer: Architectural Design and Research Institute of Guangdong Province
MEP Engineer: Architectural Design and Research Institute of Guangdong Province
Interior Architect of Record: Ruihe Decoration
Landscape Architect: Lab D+H
Landscape Architect of Record: Shenzhen Landscape
Structural Consultant: Yoshinori Nito Engineering & Design PC
Curtain Wall Consultant: EFC Engineering
Theater and Sound Consultant: Harvey Marshall Berling
Lighting Consultant: Ning Field Lighting Design
Green Building Consultant: Shenzhen Institute of Building Research