Pingshan Rixin Primary School is located in Pingshan Street, Pingshan District, Shenzhen, covering a floor area of 17,000 square meters and a building area of 49，000 square meters. The concise appearance and ordered space of the campus have invigorated the village in the downtown. With the lively settings mingled in the well-structured space for education, a series of dynamic areas are connected in a loop order, providing local students with a paradise-like school for their learning and growth.
▼校园鸟瞰，Aerial view ©张超&罗灿辉
With reflection on the informal space of campus, the design intends to find an architectural language that can enable the linkage between students’ growth and learning. Currently, the functional forms of campus buildings are highly related to students’ lives, making it even more crucial to deliver reasonable arrangement of architectural forms for formal and informal spaces in order to meet the higher requirements of education reform on campus space.
Each campus resembles a small city. At the initial stage of design, the architects were asked to make design-related decisions based on the site environment in a dense urban residential area, not only considering the relationship among the buildings within the planned area, but also strategically managing that between the campus and the city block where the school is located. On the basis of the observation and reflection on the changing vitality at different time in the same area, a full-time multi-layered design for study and life is finally crafted upon the full utilization of spaces here.
▼主入口，Main entrance ©张超&罗灿辉
▼学校西北角街景，Street View on the northwest corner of the school ©张超&罗灿辉
All spaces in a loop order are connected one after another, with steps, yards, bridges, and layers combined into a paradise-like informal campus. “Vitality loop” creates an environment in which study and life are organically integrated, adding a touch of profound, considerate and humane color to the campus culture. Children’s daily behaviors such as reading, thinking, running, playing, quarreling, daydreaming, etc. can be carried out in the open, compound, and multi-functional space.
The semi-enclosed education space of “yard” creates an efficient and intensive atmosphere of academy.
▼院落空间，Courtyard spaces ©张超&罗灿辉
▼中心庭院小剧场，Small theater in the central courtyard ©张超&罗灿辉
As the connection and transition between class activities and educational space, introverted yards deliver a more intimate and comfortable experience inside the architecture, making it easier for children to spontaneously feel the space. In addition to the two quiet inner yards, many outdoor platforms, corridors, bridges, and other elements are also added, thus to keep children away from the bad weather when they’re outside the classroom in the campus. These designs can also subtly neutralize the impact of some buildings with the size far beyond children’s physical and mental capability.
▼北侧庭院与漂浮的“盒子”，Northern courtyard with floating “box” ©张超&罗灿辉
▼北侧庭院和连廊，Northern courtyard and corridor ©张超&罗灿辉
▼三层活动平台，Platform on 3rd Floor ©张超&罗灿辉
“Bridges”, or aerial corridors, are a kind of linear space connecting different groups of architectures, which will give children a sense of physical and mental pleasure when moving between different buildings. This emotion of delight would be further enhanced when children look down from the height, as the “bridges” will become the focal point in the campus space.
▼四层连桥，Bridge of 4th floor ©张超&罗灿辉
▼教学楼之间的风雨连廊，covered corridor between the teaching buildings ©张超&罗灿辉
▼底层活动空间，Activity space at the bottom
The “sports layer” aggregates a wide range of diversified and interesting entertainment spaces downward, and connects the floating teaching spaces upward. The overhead sports space forms a three-dimensional composite sports layer, and the playground raised to the height of one floor relates to the annex of educational building. The organic connection of the vertical dimension creates a strict spatial order where children can “grow at the bottom layer and study at the upper layer”.
▼负一层的风雨操场，Indoor Playground of B1 ©张超&罗灿辉
Considering the future skyline of Shenzhen being high in the east and low in the west, we have arranged the track-and-field ground to the east and the main buildings to the west, which not only mitigates the sense of oppression to the venue from the high-rise buildings on the east side, but also makes the playground comfortable with more shadows. The gray space below the playground on the northeast side of the venue functions as the waiting area for parents to pick up their children, which maximizes the internalization and relieves the potential traffic pressure to the surrounding roads as well.
▼从二层操场望向连桥，Look from the 2nd floor playground to the bridge ©张超&罗灿辉
“Steps” are an informal place for fun and free activities, unleashing the possibility of childhood. The importance of exploring the potential of childhood has been recognized by different studies and even Nobel Prize winners. Setting up a small theater in the campus space not only stimulates students’ interest, but also becomes a part of ceremonial campus memory. Steps, a transition space born to deal with the vertical height difference, will deliver a variety of possibilities for growth, while the ceremonial architecture of theater may become the spiritual cradle for the school, which will not only promote the occurrence of students’ various behaviors, but also become a carrier of shared memories for students, parents, and teachers.
▼次入口台阶，Steps of the second entrance ©张超&罗灿辉
▼次入口二层平台，Second-floor platform of the second entrance ©张超&罗灿辉
“Windows” are a medium to connect indoor and outdoor spaces, which can affect the facade of buildings apart from lighting and ventilation. Functionally, it skillfully balances sunlight, air, and rain. The inclined metal plates are always clean due to the flushing of rain. Formally, the concise facade enhances the sense of integrity and order of the campus.
▼沿街立面，Façade along the street ©张超&罗灿辉
▼西侧外立面，Western façade ©张超&罗灿辉
▼风雨连廊采用了半透明聚碳酸酯板 The indoor bridge features translucent polycarbonate plates ©张超&罗灿辉
▼外立面细部，Details of façade ©张超&罗灿辉
School is not only the carrier for education, but also for the memory of childhood. It is with this original intention that we are not only building the structure of loops in Pingshan Rixin Primary School, but also the anchor of loops in children’s memory. We hope that children can always enjoy their discoveries and gains from the campus space in such a loop order, no matter in the past, at present or in the future.
▼夜景鸟瞰，校园与周边城市肌理，Aerial view in the night, campus and the surrounding city texture ©张超&罗灿辉
▼负一平面图 Underground floor plan ©申都设计集团有限公司深圳分公司
▼一层平面图 First floor plan ©申都设计集团有限公司深圳分公司
▼二层平面图 Second floor plan ©申都设计集团有限公司深圳分公司
▼三层平面图 third floor plan ©申都设计集团有限公司深圳分公司
▼四层平面图 Fourth floor plan ©申都设计集团有限公司深圳分公司