We have been involved in the design of Educational institutions for over 30 years. Whenever Richard Turlington Architects has the opportunity to provide architectural and design services for an educational setting, we approach them with wellness and learning in mind. Wellness is a thread that weaves through all of our work and is especially important in educational settings. This is paramount because a learning environment needs to be conducive to just that. Libraries need to be easily navigated but also include enclaves for private study groups. Labs need to be functional and safe but feel invigorating to the students and to the teacher’s senses.
Schools leave lifetime impressions on both the teachers and the students who attend them. When we think back through life you may agree that some of our life lessons, fondest memories or fantastic relationships began in an educational facility. The warm wood walls, the comfortable enveloping leather chairs we spent so many hours sitting in study groups with our peers, the lecture halls that have the perfect acoustic design so that no matter where you sit you hear clearly and can successfully participate in class. These are ways to enhance the learning environment.
But educational design is not just what is contained in the four walls of a classroom. We consider the school holistically as is our design culture. How do the busses impact the city streets in the early morning traffic, does the courtyard of a university have an effective footpath for students to easily navigate the campus, does the air conditioning system impact the envelope of the building? And is the building spatially memorable? An educational facility is part of a community; whether it is a K-12 public school or an Ivy League Institution, each project requires the community’s support for success.