Text description provided by the architects. Coding March is committed to providing Chinese young people with extensive coding courses including basic programming language, competition counseling, robotics, and scientific research.
Coding March’s Shanghai Pudong campus is located on Jinyan Road, with Shanghai Science and Technology Museum just across the river. We were astonished at the sheer number and variety of educational institutions on both sides of the road and felt on the spot the importance of youth education.
The two-storeyed building comes in the shape of a 23.3*8.6m rectangular with the north side along the upfront street. The west half of the first floor is taken up by a Japanese barber shop. The entire second is there for us to explore. The façade is made of glass curtain wall. Functional requirements are clear as the client has exceptional teaching experiences. The focus is on the flexible transformation of functions between lecture rooms, student exhibition rooms, reading rooms and staff offices.
Inspirations came instantly from two observations. Looking out from the second floor, I was reminiscent, by the glimmering tree shadows created by the light through the glass wall, of carefree childhood frolics in the field. The impressive image of stars in the vast expanse on the ground in A Sky Full of Stars, an MV by Coldplay also played a facilitating role in the final design.
Born and bred in cities, young people nowadays hardly see for themselves the colourful light of stars, and it is our wish to highlight the memory of physical touches. To this end, we try to visually retain the light and shadow of the surrounding trees, and perforate the north façade with gradient aluminum plates, mixing programming codes with the illuminating stars.
Functionally, the crisscrossing corridors serve to link different spaces and. Every kind of experience is underscored by contrasting materials and shades of colours.
Taking the façade as a whole, the area of the barbershop is also included in the design. On the first floor we have reception, parent waiting area, staircase, toilet, and storage room. In the relatively small space, the ceiling and the pavement help to divide functions. On the second floor, we have staff office and classrooms of all kinds suiting students’ needs. The staff room is furnished with folding doors to provide alternative arrangements for different activities. The adjoining area is complemented with micro landscape to echo the greenness outside.
Considering that there will be young children from grades 1-6, in addition to meeting the basic requirement for safety and comfort, it is our sincere hope to offer them a fascinating experience of nature and its changes by emphasizing the use of all their senses, so that they may become aware of an unknown beauty during breaks.