Shenzhen Nanshan Foreign Language School / Studio Link-Arc


Shenzhen Nanshan Foreign Language School / Studio Link-Arc

Primary school yard.  Image © Shengliang SuCampus courtyard in an urban context.  Image © Shengliang SuPrimary school and urban context.  Image © Shengliang SuEntrance staircase to the college campus.  Image © Shengliang Su+ 51

Aerial view of the east campus and neighboring towers.  Image © Shengliang Su
Aerial view of the east campus and neighboring towers. Image © Shengliang Su

Text description provided by the architects. Shenzhen Nanshan School of Foreign Languages ​​(NSFL School) is a 54,000 m² primary and secondary school campus that includes a comprehensive program including: regular and special classrooms, library, gymnasium, indoor swimming pool , an auditorium, a dormitory, as well as refectories and dedicated rooms. play ground.

Aerial view at dusk.  Image © Shengliang Su
Aerial view at dusk. Image © Shengliang Su

Located in the DaChong district of Shenzhen, the NSFL campus represents the latest piece in a decade-long development, in which the area has transformed from an industrial periphery into a contemporary vertical city.

View from the playground.  Image © Shengliang Su
View from the playground. Image © Shengliang Su

Surrounded by dense, high-rise residential towers, the campus faces the challenge of assembling a fragmented urban context resulting from a too rapid urbanization process endemic to the modern world. The NSFL campus design addresses these challenges through a multi-pronged strategy.

density analysis
density analysis

STRATEGY 1: HORIZONTALITY AND VERTICALITY
The design began with our original intention to create a natural and open environment for students that stimulates creativity and innovation.

Aerial view looking east.  Image © Shengliang Su
Aerial view looking east. Image © Shengliang Su
Horizontality vs.  Verticality
Horizontality vs. Verticality

The NSFL campus is designed as a vast horizontal garden that contrasts with the dense, vertical urban environment it serves. The design breaks the distinction between “building” and “open space” in favor of a low-rise linear hybrid of closed, semi-enclosed and open green spaces.

study model
study model

The design creates an open oasis for students and faculty in a high density neighborhood and recreates a lost connection between humanity and nature.

Campus courtyard in an urban context.  Image © Shengliang Su
Campus courtyard in an urban context. Image © Shengliang Su
corner of campus.  Image © Roland Halbe
corner of campus. Image © Roland Halbe

STRATEGY 2: THE WOVEN GARDEN
The classrooms are arranged in sinuous ribbons that create six interconnected open spaces tailored to the specific needs of each area of ​​education.

tree-lined courtyard.  Image © Roland Halbe
tree-lined courtyard. Image © Roland Halbe

The six open spaces are differentiated by: an entrance courtyard; a ceremonial court; the primary school yard, the college yard; a sports court and a Banyan court. Each public space is linked to one of the major programmatic divisions of the school.

College courtyard.  Image © Shengliang Su
College courtyard. Image © Shengliang Su
Entrance staircase to the college campus.  Image © Shengliang Su
Entrance staircase to the college campus. Image © Shengliang Su

Classrooms are staggered in section to allow maximum access to natural light and views and are laid out in plan to maximize access to sunlight. The elongated open spaces resulting from the arrangement of linear ribbons are differentiated according to the needs of the program. The open public spaces associated with specialized schools and colleges are articulated in closed and protected courses.

Skylight in the exhibition hall on the ground floor.  Image © Shengliang Su
Skylight in the exhibition hall on the ground floor. Image © Shengliang Su
Public space on campus.  Image © Shengliang Su
Public space on campus. Image © Shengliang Su

Adjoining the primary school and the library, the outdoor spaces open onto a large area used for physical activity. All courses are connected by a covered public path marked with a warm orange ceiling above the ground floor which allows students to access any part of the campus.

Primary school yard.  Image © Shengliang Su
Primary school yard. Image © Shengliang Su
Elementary court.  Image © Shengliang Su
Elementary court. Image © Shengliang Su

STRATEGY 3: A GLOBAL DESIGN STRATEGY
The NSFL School intentionally breaks with conventional school design strategies (which would divide the campus into “buildings” and “public spaces” in favor of a sectional organization that maximizes access to green spaces and sunlight. This allows for multiple section variations that allow for the creation of optimized spaces for play, education and interactions. This section strategy also allows the design to carefully respond to different local environmental conditions.

study model
study model

The design of the school also takes advantage of the natural slope of the site. Larger program volumes, including: the sports hall, swimming pool, dining halls and auditorium are buried in the ground, creating terraced platforms corresponding to the existing topography of the site. These terraces form a new ground on which the educational spaces and the public spaces are placed. Programs located above the new floor have access to natural light and are easily accessible as their public entrances are located above the terraced floor plan.

View of the swimming pool.  Image © Shengliang Su
View of the swimming pool. Image © Shengliang Su
View of the basketball court.  Image © Shengliang Su
View of the basketball court. Image © Shengliang Su

The architectural experience of the school is reinforced by an overall strategy that extends the design to all other aspects of the final building including: interior design, landscape design and orientation strategy. The landscape architecture and planting strategy for each of the interconnected courtyards are designed to enhance the larger architectural and programmatic program. The orientation strategy blends into the architecture via a system of color zones that make it possible to live and visually understand the larger programs of the building and are integrated with the necessary signage elements. In other words, the broader architectural strategies are integrated into all other aspects of the design and are integrated into every possible detail.

Shaded public space.  Image © Shengliang Su
Shaded public space. Image © Shengliang Su

To strengthen the connection between the building and its surroundings, the design of the NSFL School incorporates a comprehensive sustainable design strategy including natural ventilation and daylighting strategies that minimize energy consumption and respond to hot and humid climates. from Shenzhen. A series of overhangs; Perforated aluminum shade frames and shade panels minimize heat transfer to indoor and public spaces while allowing generous natural daylight. Confirmed through a digital solar radiation study, the daylighting strategy enabled the NSFL School to become the first comprehensive school with a LEED platinum rating in southern China.

primary school yard on the east side.  Image © Roland Halbe
primary school yard on the east side. Image © Roland Halbe



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