A long time center of commerce and trade, the City of Hangzhou is hailed as “China’s Silicon Valley,” and is considered the epicenter of China’s tech industry. As part of the ongoing transformation and urban development of this region, NAC was engaged in a visioning process and subsequent design competition for the development of a progressive K-12 campus that emphasizes large data, cloud computing, and internet technology as an important part of the curriculum.
Design concepts embraced and supported the organization’s educational philosophy, which focused on combining traditional Chinese excellence in education with the best teaching practices from around the world. The result was a student-centered design that supports all aspects of student development, preparing them for international study and a global world.
During the visioning process, educators for the school explained that they see their graduates as water: without a single shape, but able to take many forms. The design of the campus celebrates the idea that the students are water, and the network of buildings are connected by a metaphorical “cloud” that serves as a channel for information gathering and dissemination. The cloud creates a distinct image and identity, and supports an environment that stresses cross-curricular learning, embraces the latest advances in technology, builds campus-wide community, and celebrates a connection to nature.
Learning spaces encourage practical and real-life problem solving and group interaction, allowing collaborative work to foster the growth of personal skills and teamwork. Innovative indoor and outdoor spaces inspire learning to happen everywhere.