the world's most visited architecture website
i

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos

Sign up now to save and organize your favorite architecture projects

i

Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.

Find the most inspiring products in our Product Catalog.

i

Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »

i

All over the world, architects are finding cool ways to re-use run-down old buildings. Click here to see the best in Refurbishment Architecture.

Want to see the coolest refurbishment projects? Click here.

i

Immerse yourself in inspiring buildings with our selection of 360 videos. Click here.

See our immersive, inspiring 360 videos. Click here.

All
Projects
Products
Events
Competitions
Navigate articles using your keyboard
  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Elementary & Middle School
  4. France
  5. Paul Le Quernec
  6. 2015
  7. Nursery and Primary School in Saint-Denis / Paul Le Quernec

Nursery and Primary School in Saint-Denis / Paul Le Quernec

  • 05:00 - 1 October, 2015
Nursery and Primary School in Saint-Denis / Paul Le Quernec
Nursery and Primary School in Saint-Denis / Paul Le Quernec, Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec + 40

  • Architects

  • Location

    1 Chemin des Petits Cailloux, 93210 Saint-Denis, France
  • Area

    4800.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2015
  • Owner

    City of Saint Denis, France
  • Program

    nursery school, primary school, school cafeteria, recreation centrer
  • Cost

    12 000 000 €
  • More Specs Less Specs
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

Text description provided by the architects. The school « Niki de Saint-Phalle – Petits Cailloux » is composed of a nursery with eight classrooms, a primary school with ten classrooms, a school cafeteria and a recreation centre. The building has three levels and a basement which contains a service room. For an equal allocation of the access and connections to the different units, the construction site has been divided into six parts: three outdoor (entrance, nursery playground and primary playground) and three indoor (nursery school, primary school and school cafeteria with recreation centre). From this division results a clover-shaped building that offers, in addition to convergent and economic corridors, a very good connection between the inside and the outside (many views, points of access and a very intuitive orientation)

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

Architectural Concept :

Inside the building, considering the teaching difference between the nursery school and the primary school, we developed two spatial designs as different as the right brain can be from the left. Our brain hemispheres are symmetrical, but not identical, because of their distinct vital functions. This building is symmetrical as well only in appearance. The fact of entering the school in diapers and leaving knowing how to read, arithmetic, science, and geography perfectly illustrates how huge the gap is between these two aspects of schooling.

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

The nursery classrooms are systematically composed of three circular spaces with three different diameters and ceiling height. The primary classrooms are square shaped with a side completely “vitrée” (made of glass?). The pore spaces between the circles are used for storage allowing more area for the classrooms.

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

The multi-purpose nursery room is circular with a half spherical ceiling and the primary one is square with a pyramidal ceiling. These two huge spaces open onto the playgrounds and benefit from large overhead lighting. Also by opening onto the corridors, they contribute to the natural indoor lighting and the ease of orientation in the building with the transparencies between the inside and the outside.

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

Organisation And Perambulation:

One of our priorities was getting around and ease of orientation in the space. From the entrance, the clover shape structure of the hall enables the visitor to see straight to the two playgrounds. Once in the hall, three accesses converge from the nursery school on the right, the primary school on the left and the recreation centre in the front by the large stairs surrounding the elevator. The hall pierces the entire height of the building and is lighted by overhead lighting. Two spheres in suspension animate this great void: each sphere is a reading space belonging to the libraries of the nursery school and the primary school. We wanted to make a statement by positioning “the book” at the epicentre: the suspension in the void suggesting the elevation by knowledge.

Axonometric
Axonometric
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Axonometric
Axonometric

Outer Shell :

Considering the construction’s proportions, the treatment of its facade wasn’t easy. To avoid monotony and a fixed facade, we designed a wooden cladding system with battens that changes as the visitor goes around the building: the inferior facet of the battens is painted orange, the superior is painted apple green and the front facets are left rough. This way, the frontal view of the facade is completely neutral and its neutrality recedes as the look becomes oblique. The main facade looks green when we enter the school and orange when we go out. This effect is an initiation to the optic illusions which have great educational value for training the mind. Every choice made on this project has been done considering their impact on children’s psycho-motor development.

Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec
Courtesy of Paul Le Quernec

View the complete gallery

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Paul Le Quernec
Office
Cite: "Nursery and Primary School in Saint-Denis / Paul Le Quernec" 01 Oct 2015. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/774288/nursery-and-primary-school-in-saint-denis-paul-le-quernec/> ISSN 0719-8884

You've started following your first account!

Did you know?

You'll now receive updates based on what you follow! Personalize your stream and start following your favorite authors, offices and users.