Architecture, BC Architects, Morocco, School design, Sustainability, Sustainable designs

BC Architects designs bioclimatic preschool in Morocco

A new preschool launched by Goodplanet Foundation in Merzoug, Morocco as an extension to an existing school building was designed by BC Architects to merge vernacular building forms, materials and techniques with contemporary bioclimatic functioning and earthquake-proof designs.

While its foundation consists of locally-sourced natural stone, the preschool also features adobe walls and a wood-and-earth flat roof. The exterior finishing was completed with a ‘timeless’ render, said the architects, referring to a mix of straw and sand, and the interior finishing consists of a polished mix of earth and gypsum to create a breathable interior plaster that diffuses indirect sunlight.

The architects added that the southeast and northwest façades, which have harsh low-sun impacts, are protected by tree or courtyard shadows, while the south façade has a cavity wall for insulation and a big thermal mass, making the building cool during the day, but warmer through the night until the morning.

The classroom links to two courtyards — one on each side. Both courtyards can be read as the playground for the students aged three to six, but they can also be used as external classrooms for storytelling and other activities. These courtyards are elevated due to the topography of the site and link to a bigger front garden giving access to the rest of the school.