A new bamboo multi-use structure designed by SchilderScholte has popped up in the Bengalese town of Rajarhat. Funded by the Pani foundation out of the Netherlands, the building was made entirely from materials sourced within 15 miles of the building site. The new center provides a community meeting and event space for children, adults, and elderly residents in the region.
The two-level community center was designed to not only use recycled and local materials, but also to teach locals about sustainable building. Stretching over the complex is a thin roof made from recycled corrugated metal panels and bambo poles, which extend past the structure to block rain and create shade for the open spaces below. In addition to recycled corrugated metal which can be found around the region, SchilderScholte used other local materials such as sturdy bamboo, hand-shaped brick, mortar, and repurposed steel elements. Continuing with sustainable principles, the center was constructed using little electricity or fossil fuels, and does not rely on wood as a building tool as it is scarce in the region.
Inside, the center holds multi-use classrooms that can be used for school children as well as adult education. The rooms are naturally ventilated with cross breezes, which are cooled by a nearby pond. Two rows of classrooms face an interior courtyard that catches almost full shade throughout the day, creating a U-shaped structure. Positioned to guard the interior from rainstorms, the building is also equipped with a rainwater collection system to be used for irrigation by the community.
The Pani Community Center is an example of utilizing local materials for sustainable architecture that benefits the community.
Via Arch Daily