Educational Centre in El Chaparral / Alejandro Muñoz Miranda

© Fernando Alda

Architect: Alejandro Muñoz Miranda
Location: El Chaparral, Albolote, Granada,
Collaborators: Gregorio Morenate Navío y Nayra Fernández-Valencia Caballero
Structure: Jesús Muñoz Miranda
Construction Engineering: Patricia Muñoz Arenas
Industrial Engineering: Antonio Blas Pérez García
Artist: Jose Manuel Darro
Client: Cityhall of Albolote
Construction: UCOP
Project Area: 915 sqm
Budget: 617,078.24 €
Project Year: 2010
Photographs: Fernando Alda

The project essentially consists of walls and a ceiling with a variable section; these elements create a sequence of compressed and decompressed spaces.

section 01
© Fernando Alda

The changes in section are determined by use (corridor, classroom access and bathrooms, classroom, porch-outside covered corridor, garden, exterior covered playground) but also by the movement of the sun and the longitudinal slope of the plot. The compression-decompression game works for both longitudinal and transversal space sequences: corridor – classroom and access to the bathrooms – class¬room – porch – garden – outside covered playground as well as classroom – bedroom – classroom.

© Fernando Alda

The orientation creates a tension that is expressed through the system of apertures. The spaces opening towards the North and the courtyard get large window panels, while towards the south and the public, light is admitted only through glazed “cracks”. The fissures corresponding to the corridor and the exterior covered playground are brightly colours, while for the classrooms only clear glass is used. The classrooms are differentiated according to age groups (two classrooms for children up to1 year with bedroom, two classrooms for children from 1 to 2 years with bedroom and three classrooms for children from 2 to 3 years without bedroom). All the classrooms on the same level can be connected for larger group activities. Even if the mobile partitions are closed, visual continuity is still present through the glazed upper parts of the dividing walls.

© Fernando Alda

The whole structure evolves around the exterior covered playground, that becomes the heart of the educational centre, linking the classrooms and the interior circulation with the garden. To the East lie the kitchen and dining areas, the administration and a gym.

© Fernando Alda

On the exterior, the use of white massive volumes makes for an adequate integration in El Chaparral, a district of Albolote that emerged in the 1950s as a colonization village.

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Educational Centre in El Chaparral / Alejandro Muñoz Miranda" 03 Oct 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 26 May 2015. <>
  • gfjkfj

    little kids will be stressed with that lighting.

  • up_today_arch

    Night view is amazing…

  • kelly

    the colors are a bit intense in some of the photos. thankfully the architect designed the actually classrooms to have clear glazing.

    so glad to read that the exterior covered playground and garden are the heart of the center. very appropriate for this age of kids. the colored glazing at these areas is a great idea.