Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Rooting the hallway

The connecter hallway is designed to combine all five senses as yous take through your journey into Middle School. There are many tactile surfaces and open areas to connect all community spaces into the hallway. This hallway is the main station for displaying whats going on within the school. Each surface is marked off into sections such as activities, clubs, or achievements. This helps each student begin to feel welcome as he continues his journey and have a basic understanding of whats going on within the school. School spirit es once again established here. I view this hallway as another ring in the tree trunk. It shows the schools growth and is the foundation to stitching the school with the grade level hallways which are the branches of the school. Once again you can also see how lighting is important in the space by the green colored flooring which makes you aware that natural lighting is taking place there. Also, as a thin thread stitching all the tactile surfaces together on the walls, you can view a small accent of color under the top right material. It forms a straight line that even continues through the classroom doors. It has small recessed lighting built into in to create a stronger emphasis on the schools work below it. Finally, you can view the purple band still acting as the feeder root through the school as it carries the knowledge and nutrients into the classrooms.

Into the school

The entry way into the school is to be a general information area for the school's sustainable practices as well as the surrounding communitys interaction with the school. There are to be sliding frames with graphics and text on the right wall to dispay the info. The info wall also proves how this knowledge is tied to the knowledge found in books because of the seamless openess into the library. You are able to view grahics, text, and books all at the same time. The width of this opening relates to the floor because it is the same width of the purple that continues to feed its way through the school. This helps provide a direct connection between the knowledge found in the school as it journeys its way through each grade and hallway. Another important addition to the entry way is the natural lighting. Where to begin with the school was very sterile and being a LEED credited building, it did not show natural lighting in the most important region, the circulation areas. I opened up all sides of the space to allow the lighting to highlight certain areas.

1st : The left wall- lighting into the office, (also highlights seating at the same time to encourage students and others to stop and read info wall.

2nd: Ceiling - Lighting purges through the wood beams and translucent 3Form to highlight standing area to view graphic/info wall. (Floor is painted green where light should shine on it)

3rd: Glass doors- By creating glass doors into entry way as well as main connector hallway, I was able to continue this seamless stitching of spaces and connect the exterior into the interior

4th: Media Center- as explained earlier

Monday, May 11, 2009

Northern Guilford Middle School

The school I have designed to now be a very interactive and stimulating environment that will invoke school spirit and learning. All circulation paths flow as one and are stitched together to the community spaces to create fluidity throughout the entire school.

Saturday, May 9, 2009


Our last day finally came down to presentations at Northern Guilford High School. There were a few students including Bryan and Wade plus some other teachers. Janel, Shannon, and myself presented the studio's projects and ended with a video showing the process of our own studio's spaces' transition. I never thought I would be so nervous to present until I was standing in front of the students. Whether it was because the abundance of coffee combined with no sleep or the fact we were responsible of presenting others work, I was shaking. Not something I have done since I was in second year presenting. It was an experience however, which made me realize some other important aspects. There was a quote in the book, Home from Nowhere by Howard Kunstler which reminded me of this.

"The outcome of two decades of urban renewal was that almost nothing of enduring value got built"

This relates to my experience because I had studied each persons work so hard and became so focused on presenting each persons project with the intention of showing their whole space, that I lost site of the real challenge. This presentation was not meant for that, it was meant to show the potential each school had. By separating their work out and trying to present it individually I think I failed at this. This is why nothing had ever been built according to Kunstler. So many people tried to go in every direction to show what they believed was best for that time. However, it wasn't and many issues arose and communities were lost. The value of design needs to be looked at from every angle, whether great or small but either way it needs to be looked at as a whole. Something I should have done when presenting.
This project was a great learning experience and helped me achieve many goals which I set out to gain this semester:
1. Balancing school and life
2. Going back to my roots of hand rendering
3. Research
4. Learn a new program