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Xiayu Kindergarten, Shanghai / Atelier Deshaus

  • Architects: Atelier Deshaus
  • Location: Huale Rd, Qingpu, Shanghai, China
  • Architect: Atelier Deshaus (Liu Yichun/Zhuang Shen/Chen Yifeng)
  • Project Team: Chen Yifeng, Liu Yichun, Zhuang Shen, Fan Minji, Tang Yu
  • Site Area: 17070 m2
  • Area: 6328.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2009
  • Photographs: Zhang Siye

© Zhang Siye © Zhang Siye © Zhang Siye © Zhang Siye

From the architect. Xiayu Kindergarten lies in the Qingpu New Town. The area around site is vacant, thus the traditional urban feeling is non-existent. The eastern side elevated highway is a potential source of exhausted gas and noise, but it also provides the possibilities of viewing the building from various eye levels, altitude and speed in process of passing by. The river provides the fine landscape, and it also let us think about the way of ensuring the children’s security and the figure of building by the river. In design of Xiayu Kindergarten, we emphasize the difference between inside and outside. We moderately isolate the inside from the outside of the building by conforming the boundary, thereby creating the difference between them.

© Zhang Siye
© Zhang Siye

The inner region is protected, while the outer environment is filtrated. We find a soft curve form that could benefit for the site better than straight lines. So we separate the 15 classrooms and teacher offices into two curve clusters that are wrapped by solid and void material respectively. In the design of the class unit, we arrange all the living rooms on the first floor with outdoor playgrounds, and leave brilliant colored bedroom boxes on second floor. To emphasize floating and uncertain feeling we detach the colored boxes’ floor from the roof of first floor.

© Zhang Siye
© Zhang Siye

It’s this uncertain and isolation on proper scale that leads to a seemed random convergence condition and produces spatial tension. Every three bedrooms are linked by raised wooden walkways, thus we create a friendly and kind atmosphere like a bedroom village. The architectural volume is scattered by the tall trees dotted in those courtyards, while final architectural figure is full of vigor because of the trees. As a result, the architecture and tall trees bring out the mutual brilliant status and cohabit harmoniously in the narrow riverside.

© Zhang Siye
© Zhang Siye
Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite:"Xiayu Kindergarten, Shanghai / Atelier Deshaus" 29 Feb 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>