191221_Mustardseed Landscape plans-L102_Phase 01 Main School Site
191221_Mustardseed Landscape plans-L200_Section Main School Site 01
191125- MustardSeed-L102_Conservation Site Masterplan
“Mustardseed’s mission is to provide an inspirational and practical education for young children, encouraging them to flourish and prosper in Uganda and the wider world.”
The Place – The project sites are in Sentema, an agricultural area just outside of Kampala, Uganda. The project consists of four sites. Two sites adjacent to each other, but split by a road, are the main school sites for Phase 01. Adjacent to these ‘main sites’ is the Conservation site – a large plot which is being designated for forest & grassland education and habitat conservation both for the school and the wider community. The Boulder site, the fourth site similarly is walking distance from the main sites and is being designated as a productive plot.
The Brief – To design a landscape design to provide a holistic learning environment for the children at Mustardseed, ensuring circulation is dealt with correctly, design outdoor classroom spaces and ensure storm water is sustainably dealt with. The core element of the brief is to enrich the ecology of the site at the same time of enriching the education of the children. This is another exciting project with Studio FH Architects.
The Design – Main school site.
The goal of the landscape design is to provide a nurturing environment for the children to learn from exploration and from nature. The design draws from the architectural language resulting in a simple proposal which seeks to merge the line between indoor and outdoor spaces.
The language is comprised of soft flowing lines and gentle terraces. The boundaries of the site are heavily re-forested to ensure a green buffer but also to encourage wildlife and bird corridors.
At the heart, this project is driven by ensuring that we develop a landscape design which seeks to illustrate how the model school (living footprint for us all) needs to place the importance of nature and ecology on an equal footing as the human needs; humanity and nature need to co-exist in order to find a sustainable balance in the world. Mustardseed seeks to demonstrate this.
The Design – Boulder site – Sustainable timber production
In the concept design we are looking to demonstrate various species which can be used instead of Eucalyptus and Grevillea in order to meet the growing demand o
f timber in Central/East Africa.
As populations grow it is evident that the young Mustardseed students would benefit from a demonstration area which shows fast growing, native tree species which can be used as timber crops, without degrading the local soils and reducing ground water levels – common issues associated with Eucalyptus and Grevillea, introduced timber crops.
This demonstration zone would teach the children home/land management sustainable solutions which although simple can have wide reaching effects as knowledge is taken back home.
Seeds and a nursery cou
ld be developed as part of Biology lessons and then the children take away seedlings back from after every term to plant at home – spreading and growing knowledge.
The Design –
The conservation site provides the opportunity to protect an area for preservation and enrichment of species within the school grounds.
The discussion of how ‘finding space for nature’ is imperative to the future of our planet. Mustardseed has the opportunity to demonstrate to the school children and to the wider community the importance of reforestation.
As this area becomes a key biological exterior classroom a nursery can be developed and the good of this established forest and ecosystem can help biodiversity enrichment of the wider community.
Our concept sees simple interventions (paths and outdoor teaching terraces) which allow people to lightly use the land together with a roll out of reforestation of the site.