An excerpt from the competition essay best describes our architectural intentions:
Sustainable design continues to achieve milestones in building performance, but its architectonic possibilities remain under-realized. The West Donlands School and Community Centre proposes the use of re-deployable high-precision formwork assemblies, and their incorporation into the final design solution. From this point of departure, the design proceeds to integrate a full suite of passive environmental technologies, simultaneously paying close attention to the creation of a dynamic educational space by taking full advantage of the plastic potential of cast-in-place concrete. Its architectonic language derived directly from sustainable innovation, The West Donlands School and Community Centre generates a conceptual dialogue between formal expressivity and the sustainable agenda.
A selection from our final review panels is shown below.
Our design process made significant use of exploratory models at several scales, including: a 1:200 scale model of the building and site, fabricated from 3D printed plaster, laser-cut basswood and acrylic, and CNC milled MDF; a two-metre long, 300 kilogram, 1:20 scale sectional model of the building, fabricated from concrete cast in milled styrene formwork; and a full-scale concrete table cast in re-deployable baltic birch formwork.
We prepared supporting documents outlining our acoustical, structural and life-safety design strategies, as well as a 1:10 scale sectional drawing detailing the building envelope, a portion of which is shown below.