Goh Keng Swee Centre for Education

1233 Goh Keng Swee 3

Goh Keng Swee Centre for Education

The basic building blocks of learning – the synapses that organize the brain’s neural network – were primary inspirations for the design of this iconic Ministry of Education building in Singapore.

1233 Goh Keng Swee 3

A dramatic perforated metal screen envelops the most visible parts of the Goh Keng Swee Centre, serving both a pragmatic and aesthetic role. Drawing upon the metaphor of the synapse, the pattern of openings is generated by images of the neural network.

Todd Schliemann, Design Partner
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The building is organized to promote dynamic collaboration among four new teaching academies of the Goh Keng Swee Centre: the Academy of Singapore Teachers, the Physical Education and Sports Teachers Academy, the Singapore Teacher Academy of the Arts and the English Language Institute of Singapore.

The design evokes the unique crossroads of the mind that mediate the flow of information and transfers it within the human brain, activating thought and action: a worthy tribute to Goh Keng Swee’s philosophies and legacy. 

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1233 Goh Keng Swee Auditoirum
1233 Goh Keng Swee Axo Diagrams

The use of conventional materials to create an extraordinary structure generates a building full of possibility and potential – organized yet nuanced, ordered yet spontaneous, expressive yet restrained, dignified yet inspiring.

1233 Goh Keng Swee Exploded Axon
1233 Goh Keng Swee Section Perspectives
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The perforated metal panel screen performs at an urban and intimate scale. Visible at a distance, the larger pattern creates an identity and character for the building. A finer pattern of varied perforations creates a unique experience for people inside the building looking out – a compelling reminder of neural networks.


2012 (unbuilt)
12,309 GSF
Exhibits, Amphitheater, Lecture Hall, Library, Vertical Garden, Black Box Theater, Rehersal and Studio Space, Open/Private Office, Conference Rooms, Green Roof


Design Partner
Todd Schliemann
Management Partner
Don Weinreich
Project Designer
Brian Masuda
Project Manager
Francelle Lim
Design Team
Eliza Montgomery, Brent Stringfellow
Associate Architect
DP Architects Pte, Ltd.


Meinhardt Group
Beca Group
Gustafson Guthrie Nichol
Meinhardt Light Studio
Acviron Acoustics Consultants Pte Ltd
Rider Levett Bucknall
Meinhardt Façades Technology