Calabritto Elementary School

Calabritto - Italy
Client: U.S. Agency for International Development (AID)

The Calabritto School is a projected design which is part of the earthquake relief program in Southern Italy, sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development. This small community school in contrast to the Vallata and Avellino cases has a very simple program for a maximum of 250 elementary students. The available site is an odd shape sloping steeply toward a valley on the east. The program based on local analysis and Italian national standards calls for ten classrooms, a gym with changing room facilities, administrative office and support services. A small kitchen was requested for community use, since lunch is not generally served at school. The design orients a formal front toward the city and opens itself up to the dramatic valley view on the east. Classrooms are single loaded and arranged as two wings to give good solar orientation for natural lighting. Connecting them are support services to make a U form. Intersecting the U form is the central entry axis, with two special-use classrooms and gym at the crossing. These are divided with movable partitions, so that a larger area is available for community auditorium use. Roof towers and offsets used on the gym and near the entry provide natural lighting while breaking down the exterior form to a friendlier scale appropriate for primary school children. Two towers also give symbolic emphasis to the teacher