SAKO architects: LOOP kindergarten in tianjin
SAKO architects: LOOP kindergarten in tianjin SAKO architects: LOOP kindergarten in tianjin
apr 19, 2013

SAKO architects: LOOP kindergarten in tianjin

‘LOOP kindergarten’ by SAKO architects, tianjin, chinaimage © misae hiromatsuall images courtesy of SAKO architects




the ‘LOOP’ kindergarten in tianjin by tokyo and beijing-based practice SAKO architects creates a clear contrast between the industrious apartment-block surroundings and the colorful colosseum of education. not a single sharp corner exists – from the footprint to the window sills, beveled edges make for a kid-friendly environment brought to life with 18 vivid tones that span the spectrum of the color wheel and carry through to the structure.

view from the running trackimage © misae hiromatsu




the gradually transforming colors also hold a logistical purpose – they are used by the children to identify different areas in the structure so they do not get lost or confused in a circular building. classrooms are organized over three levels, the top two of which contain a series of windows that look into the central courtyard space. the top storey allows access to the rooftop garden where smaller structures serve as open-air playgrounds.

entrance to courtyardimage © misae hiromatsu




the bottom level has outward facing windows and a covered series of atria in a large arena-like multifunctional assembly area. various platforms tinged to match the corresponding columns step out of or into the ground plane creating spheres of activity for smaller groups.


skylights that protrude into the exterior courtyard are carried through into the underground square bringing in plenty of natural daylight. each student has a right to views, fresh air, and access to open spaces, a factor which this project takes to heart so that adults and kids alike can enjoy their learning environments.

central courtyardimage © misae hiromatsu

view towards the central courtyardimage © misae hiromatsu

hallwayimage © misae hiromatsu

stairs to the central underground courtyardimage © misae hiromatsu

entrance to central hallimage © misae hiromatsu

central hall below the exterior courtyard with skylightsimage © misae hiromatsu

elevated and sunken stepped platforms of various colors that refer to the hues of the proximal columnsimage © misae hiromatsu

classroomimage © misae hiromatsu

classroomimage © misae hiromatsu

rooftop gardenimage © misae hiromatsu

bird’s eye viewimage © misae hiromatsu

image © misae hiromatsu





project info:


project name: loop in tianjinproject location: tianjin, chinaproject type: kindergarten architect/s: keiichiro sako, yoko fujii, jing, junya kazuno/ sako architectslighting design: masahide kakudate lighting architect & associates,inc.client: sino-ocean land holdings limitedsize: 3 storiesgross floor area: 4,300 sqm design period: 2009/06-2011/03construction period: 2011/04-2012/07photography credit: ruijing photo

  • By default, most kids love warmth and concealment. LOOP radiates the opposite, a constructed take on shallow endlessness. One thing I’ve learned from sending three kids to kindergarden myself during the past 14 years is that reflective surfaces and high frequencies don’t go well with each other. I truely hope – for the kids and educators of Tianjin – that a major investment in sound absorbing fabrics, carpets and plants will have top priority on the to-do list.

    Stephan Mathieu says:
  • Wow! That is really a space-efficient way to give city-kids a fitting environment to play and learn in. Imo, this should be the model way to build kindergartens in dense urban areas.

    Soren Romer says:
  • It´s a Cake.

    Luis says:
  • Life is not a video game…

    Carlos says:
  • Very cool and modern. Yet the buildings that support the school are empty. Another waste of money spent by China with no local population or employment opportunities to support their “HUGE” projects.

    Franklyn says:
  • looks like a clinic, where are the trees? the real lawn? colors alone do not make a kindergarden

    Akika says:
  • and what’s with those stairs all around little kids…??? Stairs and kids won’t come along well… I can see where they were going with it though but still not there…

    Amin says:

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