Penguins Preschoo
South Africa
This social uplift-meant project simultaneously tackles the need for education, environmental awareness and social integration within a fragmented society.
Project Brief: To expand an existing preschool in a cost effective manner using unrecyclable waste material and to develop skills among the community in the process. Site response: This intervention offers a precedent of densifying the typical RDP block house landscape. By lifting the residential component to a new first floor and positioning the new component up against the boundary meant that every square metre of the ground level could be maximized. The Upcycled Wall: The project’s team of professionals have developed a system that packages Ecobricks (two liter plastic bottles filled with compressed plastic packaging) in such a manner that the end product is fire resistant and equipped to handle our coastal climate. In this way plastic waste is upcycled into an insulating building material. The Recyclable Wall: This system of construction has been designed around the (probable changing) lifespan of the building. Together the Ecobricks act as insulating infill panels supported by a lightweight steel structure and protected from the elements by fire resident boarding. Should alterations/relocation of building ever be required the boarding may be removed, the Ecobricks and steel frame reshuffled accordingly and the same boarding can be reused. Social Impact: This project simultaneously addresses the early educational needs of a small township community as well as the environmental awareness of an entire metropolitan area. Social Integration: This project brought together people from vastly diverse backgrounds in order to create the target amount of Ecobricks. Social Legacy: This building will form a tangible example of what can be accomplished when communities unite to addresses shared challenges.

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