Paris is cleaning up its act and the École Maternelle by Eva Samuel Architects and Associates is the first school to comply with the guidelines of the city's rigorous Climate Plan. More than just a pretty façade (although it is certainly that as well), the building envelope ensures protection from the sun but not to the detriment of natural lighting or ventilation.
Despite numerous solar screens that block excess heat gain, the deep façade facilitates both natural lighting and ventilation, as well as double flux in winter. The building has bay, alcove and concave windows, which double as skylights and house the building’s treatment machinery and vent chimneys. All of this results in impressive energy efficiency.
The multiform strawberry-colored elements give the school its distinctive identity, while the anodized aluminum cladding changes color depending on each person’s vantage point, the color of the sky and the surrounding buildings. Inside the environment is calm and protective, and the children use the deep windows as play areas and little hidey holes.
all images © Gaston Bergeret