The concept adopted for Southfields School is very much a reponse to the existing context of the school and how it operates. The focus is to positively impact the wider built environment but also each student’s experience of day to day life at the school.
Form therefore follows function creating a number of covered and uncovered social breakout and circulation spaces sandwiched between formal teaching pods. The purpose: to encourage un-structured incidental learning and recreation at key areas identified as ‘social’ spaces in the wider context of the school on all scales, ranging from social to intimate.
These break out spaces translate architecturally through transparency and the use of glass. Situated between solid brick teaching pods and a solid stone lecture theatre the architectural language attempts to celebrate, support and promote the activities for which these spaces were designed.
Each element is ordered and arranged based on site context. Classrooms, cafes and informal spaces take advantage of landscape connections and views, whilst inward looking spaces and service zones sit in more overlooked dense locations.
The result we hope is a contextually successful and responsive building both in its physical sense and the impact it has on its user.
c/o Sursham Tompkins