MAKE SPACE 4 PLAY
Green schoolyard for Utrecht

As an architect & teacher I do NOT know what children want...children know it themselves.

During the participation sessions children enriched me with their ideas how to create a greener and nicer schoolyard.

More places to hide ~ More colourful and nicely smelling flowers  ~ More secret paths ~ More seating places ~ More different games

The schoolyard is linked to a monumental schoolbuilding belonging to the open-air school-movement from the 1930's.

In my design I have integrated the children's wishes with the beauty of the schoolbuilding: 

The brick vertical columns on the facade (which support the enormous open glass faces) are horizontally continued on the schoolyard strengthening the relation building-yard.           The original planters and seats are being brought back, an open-air class is linked to the old vision of the school. 

In the design the urban area is being overtaken by two enlarged green areas in which children are challenged to discover, to mess about, to climb and jump, to roll on the grass, to pretend roleplay on the platforms between the hazelnut bushes, to smell and feel different plants in the outdoor class, and to hide within the secret paths between the bamboobushes.

The two green areas are linked by a playful hopping and balancing path crossing the tiled yard.