Rural Urban Framework Uses Mirrored Tiles To Camouflage Toilets At Mulan Primary School

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Hong Kong studio Rural Urban Framework covered this new principal school toilet block in mirrored tiles so that it displays its surroundings, assisting to camouflage the constructing .

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

Mulan Primary School was extended by Rural Urban Framework to supply a new toilet block, playground, and a developing for extra classrooms. Mirrored ceramic tiles cover the toilet block and the vertical risers of the playground measures, and have also been laid in an alternating pattern on the new classroom developing.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

“We had been interested in the contrast amongst the building’s rough exterior, and a completely distinct spatial knowledge,” architect Joshua Bolchover informed Dezeen. “The smooth, reflective tiles catch light and produce soft, blurry reflections, which are animated by the movement of the young children.”

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

Mirrored surfaces are often employed to disguise buildings among their surroundings. Other examples featured on Dezeen incorporate a South Korean artwork gallery designed to merge with its rural setting and a partially sunken house extension in a London conservation spot.


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The extension of Mulan Major School, situated in the village of Mulan in Guangdong Province, was partly spurred by a government policy of consolidating main schools, closing down some and expanding other folks.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

It was also designed to mitigate the effect of a higher-speed railway directly behind the school, which links the area with the city of Guangzhou roughly two hrs away, and had designed a mound of unstable and unsafe earth.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

“The college had attempted to partially flatten the website behind the school and had constructed up earth close to the embankment to the new railway, but this slope was unstable and liable to mud slides due to its steep gradient and loosely packed earth,” mentioned Bolchover.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

The architects re-contoured this ground to decrease its slope and extra a concrete retaining wall to make it secure. A reed bed was also added beneath the concrete retaining wall to filter waste from the close by toilet block.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

“The waste liquids enter a series of gravel filtration beds from which toxic nitrates are slowly extracted from the soil,” explained Bolchover. “The liquid waste slowly flows by way of the reed bed right up until the last stage, when any excess water is effectively clean and can be launched into the water courses.”

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

The new classroom developing was created a U-shaped structure to enclose a modest courtyard, and has one particular side that methods up from the ground to offer outdoor seating for school assemblies and talks.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

Rural Urban Framework integrated equivalent elements in its design and style for a hospital in China’s Hunan Province, which attributes a central courtyard and measures that climb up its roof.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

“Our strategy for the college was to organise the site as a series of sequential open spaces, linking the courtyards among the current college, the new developing and the playground,” stated the architects, who covered the new classroom wing in recycled roof tiles from nearby villages and added perforated brick sections to assistance climbing plants.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

The school’s terraced outside spaces had been also designed to perform as a meeting and gathering room for the wider neighborhood, which elects village heads to make selections on the use of collective land.

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

“It was critical to claim this land as a public area for the neighborhood,” stated Bolchover. “Regardless of being asked on numerous occasions, we did not style a boundary wall, in buy to maintain the porosity and interaction between the school and the village.”

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban Framework

The venture was finished over two years and price 573,000 RMB (approximately £59,000).

Photography is by Rural Urban Framework.


Project credits

Design and style: John Lin and Joshua Bolchover
Landscape layout: Dorothy Tang
Project manager: Maggie Ma (college developing), Tanya Tsui (toilet and landscape)
Project team: Tanya Tsui, Huang Zhiyun, Crystal Kwan, Jessica Lumley, Yau Ching Kit

Mulan primary school by Rural Urban FrameworkInternet site plan Mulan primary school by Rural Urban FrameworkGround floor plan Mulan primary school by Rural Urban FrameworkArea Dezeen

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