s2arch and RWTH aachen university build a new school in south africa s2arch and RWTH aachen university build a new school in south africa
jul 29, 2013

s2arch and RWTH aachen university build a new school in south africa

‘ithuba science center’ by RWTH aachen university and s2arch, montic, johannesburg, south africa
image © leon krige
all images courtesy of RWTH aachen university

 

 

 

a few years ago, european and south african NGO s2arch undertook a project in montic, just south of johannesburg, to build the ithuba skills college that would provide education in natural sciences and english to underprivileged local children. in addition, all the design would be done by various european faculties of architecture and would be built by volunteers in collaboration with the local community and students. the most recent addition consists of the ithuba science center – two classrooms dedicated to biology and chemistry, a muti-use hall, and necessary support program – by students at the RWTH aachen university in germany. the concept took the regular rectangular footprint and cut an open public corridor through the center dividing two angular forms joined by a folded roof. a steel frame structure is supported on a poured concrete foundation and infilled with bales of a straw/clay composite – a traditional german insulation technique that creates a monolithic wall with high thermal properties. large operable openings allow for plenty of ventilation and light, while the double pitched metal roof overhangs to provide adequate shading, separated from the structure of the building forms to allow hot air to escape through the plenum. 

 

 


image © leon krige

 

 


image © leon krige

 

 


view from the neighboring building
image © leon krige

 

 


image © leon krige

 

 


plastered walls create a natural earth-tone look and provide a high degree of insulation
image © nora muller

 

 


image © nora muller

 

 


dividing exterior corridor
image © nora muller

 

 


image © nora muller

 

 


image © nora muller

 

 


interior of the classroom clad in pinewood boards
image © leon krige

 

 


image © leon krige

 

 


large windows make for light-filled spaces
image © leon krige

 

 


image © leon krige

 

 


construction of the cob walls
image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


construction
image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


floor plan / level 0

 

 


section
image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


section
image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


axonometric
image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 


image courtesy RWTH aachen university

 

 

 project info:

 

 

conducted by:
ithuba skills college, johannesburg
s2arch, social and sostainable architecture, wien: elias rubin

partners:
ithuba community college, johannesburg
s2arch, social and sostainable architecture, wien: elias rubin, marlene wagner

participants:
rwth aachen – faculty of architecture
department of building typologies and design basics:
dipl.-ing. bernadette heiermann, dipl.-ing. nora elisabeth müller, dipl.-ing. judith reitz, prof. anne-juchen bernhardt
department of structures and structural design:
dipl.-ing. christoph koj, prof. martin trautz

department of theory of architecture:
prof.dr. manfred speidel mit tatsuya tokura

advisors:
transsolar energietechnik gmbh: dipl.-ing. markus krauss, felix pöhler
engineers without borders
regional group aachen

completion: spring 2012

Save

  • Brilliant ideas, for hot countries, I always wished that buildings like schools, factories and animal barns would have a space between the roof and a “left open” room below. Steel trusses, because termites are voracious in Africa, Asia. They even kill and eat fully grown live trees. Only one problem: Can the roofs be anchored against high winds? So they don’t take off like a flying wing?

    tomobiwan says:

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