Architecture Canada n°3 2nd semestre 2007
Architecture Canada n°3 2nd semestre 2007
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  • Parution : n°3 de 2nd semestre 2007

  • Périodicité : semestriel

  • Editeur : Naylor Canada

  • Format : (213 x 276) mm

  • Nombre de pages : 56

  • Taille du fichier PDF : 5,2 Mo

  • Dans ce numéro : des écoles novatrices.

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www.raic.org/2007 Innovative Design Innovative design goes to school By Christopher Guly AArchitect Wayne Guy, FRAIC, was in search of adventure when he headed north in the late 70s, yet never expected to also open new frontiers in his profession. But the London-born, Montreal-raised architect not only established the Northwest Territories Architectural Association in 2002, his six-year-old Yellowknife-based, six-member firm, Guy Architects, is also behind one of the country’s most innovative schools. Completed in the fall of 1999 and opened in February 2000, École Allain St-Cyr is not only the first francophone school in the Territories, it’s also the first Canadian school to feature displacement ventilation. The gravity ventilation system uses large grills at the floor level to provide low-velocity air throughout the rooms of the three-storey school. « Since the air is slightly cooler, it uses less energy to temper it — and, because it is low velocity, it requires less fan power to drive it — and that saves energy, » says Guy. He explains that a low-velocity system, which doesn’t stirup a lot of dust, also relies on convection to send warm, stale air to the ceiling where it is exhausted outside. Says Guy : « It leads to better air quality and is designed to meet the needs of children with asthma and other allergies that we see more and more in the school system, particularly in the Arctic and Subarctic regions. » The $4.2-million building, which received funding from the federal Department of Canadian Heritage and the Northwest Territories government, also has an in-floor heating system. Environmentally friendly to its occupants, École Allain St-Cyr is also sensitive to its surroundings. All the trees within a metre of the 1,600- square-metre building were spared during construction, so the school is nestled within a forest of birch, spruce and tamarack. The main floor is angledup rock to prevent blasting, and some of the native rock — granite from the Precambrian Shield — is even incorporated into some portions of the building. Says Guy : « So the building isn’t an obstacle or barrier between the kids and nature, and in that way it really highlights the connection to nature, which is the ultimate teacher in a lot of ways. » There’s also a lot of colour, inside and outside, including the bright yellow and orangerust — inspired by the hue of nearby foliage in the autumn — that greets people at the entrance. « We wanted to use a lot of colour to animate spaces, since the environment to educate children should provide them with a lot of life and joy, » explains Guy. Starting with its bridge and moat-style main entrance, the school has a sense of the storied walled city of Old Quebec that provides a sense of security for those within but which also fosters interaction through its internal layout. An open grand hallas tallas the building and niches off the main area allow students, teachers and parents to socialize — an important component for a facility that also houses a ground-floor daycare forup to 30 children and serves as a meeting place for Yellowknife’s francophone community. The rotunda — the main focal point of the building — can be used as a community hall or as a theatre in the round or in a proscenium configuration, with seating for about 250 people. During school hours, the area can be configured to serve as two more classrooms in addition to the six for about 150 students from grades 1 to 9. (A multimillion-dollar expansion announced by the federal and territorial governments last year will enable École Allain St- Cyr to accommodate more than 250 elementary and secondary studentsup to grade 12 in the future.) Community meetings can also be held on a roof terrace, located on the second floor of the rotunda. And there’s plenty of natural light supplied by large windows and the glazed clerestory wall of the raised portion of the roof. Pretty — and practical, as Guy explains. 14 ■ THE ROYAL ARCHITECTURAL INSTITUTE OF CANADA/L’INSTITUT ROYAL D’ARCHITECTURE DU CANADA ARCHITECT : GUY ARCHITECTS/PHOTOS : TIM ATHERTON École Alain St-Cyr, characterized by bold forms and bright colours. The third-floor library looms above the roof terraces of the rotunda. « Thorncliffe communicates as a school that wants to delight and nurture its students. That’s what separates it cleanly from all of the heavyset, oppressive institutions that have been constructed in this country. » - Lisa Rochon Globe and Mail
Innovative Design THE ROYAL ARCHITECTURAL INSTITUTE OF CANADA/L’INSTITUT ROYAL D’ARCHITECTURE DU CANADA ■ 15• www.raic.org/2007



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