American School in Japan (ASIJ) has unveiled Ennead's master plan design in a recent article from The Japan Times. This article addresses one feature of the design that stands out;
The most unique part of the architectural vision, designed by a U.S.-based team from Ennead Architects, consists of a “river of learning.” The idea came from conversations with students on site, said Alex O’Briant, a principal architect on the Ennead team. In particular, it was a conversation with a fourth grader who said the campus could use a river. “We are not going to build a river through the middle of campus,” O’Briant said. “But we are going to create a transformational educational environment that’s every bit as powerful as the river that inspired it.” Renderings of ASIJ’s possible new look depict a winding, river-shaped building that allows the institution’s elementary, middle and high schools to flow into and interact with one another.
The building incorporates academic spaces as well as multipurpose, interconnected indoor and outdoor areas. “Classrooms are the fundamental building blocks, but it’s actually about the spaces in between,” said Minh Tran, an associate principal architect at Ennead. “(Spaces) that not only support a collaborative and interdisciplinary environment, but also an interdivisional environment.”
The campus renewal will take a multi-phased approach to ensure the school remains operational for the duration of the project.
Read the full article here.