07/07/2016
PRETORIA BOYS HIGH SCHOOL – HALL AND MUSIC CENTRE
KMH ARCHITECTS
South Africa
The new proposed structures relate and enhance the existing student courtyards to create outdoor rooms, adding versatility to the school’s programmes, and uniting the historical main buildings with the new music centre.
Pretoria Boys High School is a traditional boy’s state school situated on an 85 acre campus to the south-east of the Pretoria city centre. With origins that can be traced back to 1901. Enrolment of around 1600 pupils makes it the largest boys' school in South Africa. The state school's distinctive red-brick buildings, which have provincial heritage site status, were built in the Neoclassical Style and date from 1909. The school has a well-established musical tradition and has a formal symphony orchestra, jazz ensemble, Dixie band, choir, pipe band and folk group and it was because of the growth of these programmes, that KMH was invited to prepare a proposal for a new assembly and performance hall. Instead of developing a new stand-alone building, this concept proposal establishes a new and contrasting language of building that would provide a new narrative and identity within the existing historical courtyards. The key for the new Hall with a seating capacity of 1600 students, New Library, and music centre was to create spaces that possess the capacity to adjust to new and different uses over time. The conceptual approach to the Pretoria boy’s high hall, library and music centre is grounded in the evolution of the hall spaces to be able to adapt to support new curriculums or uses in the future. The hall wings are flexible / multi-use spaces that are able to morph into mini auditoriums for drama, cinema, exhibition room or debate rooms for both internal and external uses. The project is currently under construction with phase 1 (Hall) set for practical completion for 30 July 2015 and the music centre for 30 April 2016.
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