Shunmai School

When working at ZNA, I designed the Shunmai School in Harbin, and took it through the SD and DD phases. Totaling 36,000sqm, the project consists of a kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, cafeteria, and a dual-purposed gymnasium/auditorium. Adopting a court-yard configuration, a building type indigenous of northern China, the kindergarten and school buildings provide sheltered outdoor playground for the students during Harbin’s harsh winter. I designed a large-span tilted roof system that facilitates the self-cleaning of snow during the winter, and provides northern natural light during the day. I also developed a skylight and light well system that brings natural light to classrooms on both the upper and lower level. Sharing the cafeteria and gym, the elementary school and middle school are also connected to each other through these buildings. The kindergarten, with its smaller scale, occupies a separate corner of the site. The cafeteria and gym’s roof covers an entrance independent of the school entrances, so that on the weekends the general public has direct access to the athletic field and gym, therefore the local community benefits from the school facilities without interfering with normal school operation.