Gabriel García Márquez Primary Public School


TYPOLOGY: Public School
CREDITS: In partnership with J.Paul Restrepo Santa María
YEAR: 2017
LOCATION: Yumbo, Colombia
First public school with LEED Certification

The Gabriel García Márquez Primary Public School designed in collaboration with JPR Arquitectos.

We considered important to focused on a courtyard typology for the center of the building and the ground floor to function as a community center outside teaching hours and at weekends. Following that rationale, we placed the classrooms on the first floor, and on the ground floor all the other spaces that could be easily accessed and used by the public as a center for children’s early stimulation, a library, cafeteria, multipurpose hall, and bathrooms.

The classrooms themselves were surrounded by a 3-meter-wide corridor/ring as somewhere children could gather. This corridor shelters the classrooms from the strong sunlight and gives children somewhere to play. This ring appears suspended. It has a yellowish concrete sill—a color created by the local silicate—lending it a powerful presence within the local neighborhood.

We implemented a rainwater capture system, allowing its reuse in the bathrooms and irrigation devices; the metal structure contains recycled material collected during the construction process, promoting the circular use of waste.

In addition, the infrastructure has a bioclimatic design that allows greater access to natural light and better air renewal and solar panels, which encourages the use of cleaner and less expensive energy sources inside the building.

All of the above guaranteed LEED certification, which made the project the first public school in the country to obtain this certification.