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CottonOn Foundation School in Rakai, Southern Uganda
Project in design phase.
The Place – Rakai is a district in Southern Uganda. The climate tends to be on the dryer side with grasslands growing naturally on the hillsides and forested valleys. The area is quite populated with lots of agriculture, mainly with the Matoke (Musa acuminata ‘East African Highland’) and sweet bananas.
The Brief – This is our 8th school with the CottonOn Foudation and Localworks within the region. Our brief extended to seriously considering the external teaching opportunities for the children, both through explorative play and outdoor classrooms to ensure we achieve a holistic learning environment.
Critically for us we explored the ecological restoration of the wider site introducing reforestation zones, in the valley, sustainable and indigenous timber plantation for use as biomass fuel for the project, and a grassland meadow restoration zone.
The Design – Our design sees a series of courtyard designs for the internal spaces between the buildings. We have sought to create a sense of fun within the spaces, creating long undulating balance walls for the children which help with level changes as well as other various play items such as climbing mounds.
Each of the classrooms has an outdoor classroom, shaded by a variety of fast growing pioneer species, such as Polyscias fulva.
The project is in its final design review.