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Z+T Studio: Dahua Magic International Kindergarten is a renovation project, which is located in Baoshan District, Shanghai, along with a river on the south, Meidan Road on the west, and high-density residential buildings on both sides of the north and east. Here has been the display area of Dahua Blue Lake in the past five years. Life is like an immersive show. Childhood opens the first chapter, and kindergarten becomes a dream stage that carries diverse stories.
童年对于人的一生至关重要，进入幼儿园，让小朋友第一次尝试离开父母独立生活，填充属于自己小故事，著名的心理学家弗雷德•阿德勒曾说过：“幸运的人一生都被童年治愈。” 大华马杰克双语幼儿园一所以” Unique Kids，Unique Education ” 为教育理念的幼儿园，旨在提供沉浸式的英文环境，通过对儿童的认知、情感、社交、运动和语言技能进行重点教育，培养学习习惯、阅读习惯、探索精神，帮助儿童发展语言能力、综合素质能力、全球化视野，以及独特的个性特征。
Childhood is very important to a person’s life. Entering kindergarten is the first time for children to leave their parents, live independently, and start their short journals. The famous psychologist Fred Adler once said: “A lucky man is always healed by his childhood.” Dahua Magic International Kindergarten uses “Unique Kids, Unique Education” as the educational concept. It aims to provide an immersive English environment. By focusing on children’s cognition, emotion, social interaction, movement, and language, the kindergarten cultivates children’s study habits, reading habits, and exploration spirit and helps children develop language skills, comprehensive quality capabilities, global vision, and unique personality characteristics.
As landscape architects, we hope to provide children with a stage to breed happy memories.
幼儿园，kindergarten 一词，源于德语，kinder 是小孩，garten 是花园。
The word kindergarten is derived from German. “Kinder” means children, and “garten” means garden.
-What kind of “children’s garden” can let children free themselves?
-An open space in the shade of greenery frees unlimited possibilities.
Making a garden for children is the original intention that attracted us to take this project. However, when we arrived at the site, the problems and challenges became our keys to open the design box.
1. The site axis creates a strong sense of division. The decorative and symbolic style of elements makes it difficult to achieve the ideal kindergarten design as clients imagined.
2. A large number of low shrubs attract mosquitoes. The unclear vision will cause a safety issue, and there is limited outdoor space for children.
3. We propose to keep the attractive existing canopy trees but the original elevation of planting beds has conflicts with the drainage requirements of the new design in many places.
4. Considering the cost and location, it is difficult to transport the earthwork and small pieces of waste.
5. The specifications of Shanghai kindergartens must be met and be reasonably arranged in a limited space.
6. The lack of original as-built drawings and archives, the unclear underground works, and large-scale demolition and excavation will increase the budget, which also puts forward higher requirements for future infrastructure development.
▼改造前场地面貌：轴线式布局，灌木视线遮挡严重，轴线式、符号化的元素明显 The major issues before renovation are the axis-type layout, the obstructed sight by shrubs, and the outstanding axis-type and symbolic elements.
我们针对以上罗列出的问题，逐一分析，做出了回应的解决策略。同时伴随着整个分析过程当中，马杰克幼儿园” Unique Kids，Unique Education ” 的教育理念，让我们意识到，这块场地理所应当也应该是Unique kindergarten。我们确定了本案的设计原则：去符号化，不增删现场乔木，来做一场释放出林下自由活动行为潜能，对培养儿童的认知、情感、社交、运动和语言技能起到辅助性作用的场地“微”改造。具体解决策略为：
We analyzed the problems listed above one by one and made responses. During the analysis process, the educational philosophy “Unique Kids, Unique Education” of Magic International Kindergarten made us realize that this space should be a Unique kindergarten. We determined the design principles of this case: de-symbolization, remaining existing canopy trees, releasing the potential of free activities under the woods, and a micro-renovation that plays a supporting role in cultivating children’s cognitive, emotional, social, motion and language skills. The according strategies are:
1. Give kids more activity spaces by rearranging the understory planting space. At the same time, reduce mosquitoes and open visual access to the site from avoiding obstructed sight for easier management.
2. The drop-off at the entrance is a relatively complete square hardscape on site. The entrance decorative and symbolic water feature can be removed to become a better distribution space for kids. The ground has a uniform light-washed stone design. With the large-span gallery frame at the top, space is divided by light and shadow, adding a different texture.
3. The boundary of the fire lane is expanded into a curve that breaks the original axis. By ensuring the recycling of the hardscape materials, the design adds liveliness and agility to the site lines. At the same time, the little zebra on the logo inspires the plastic playground pattern. Can we transform part of the fire lane into a zebra-patterned outdoor carpet?
4. Respect the existing trees’ elevation, keep all the big trees and reorganize the vertical design. Our proposal combines the plastic playground and the lawn to make an undulating terrace, adding interest and solving the drainage problem.
5. In front of the enclosed background forest on the south side, the terrain is shaped with eccentric circles to create the free core of the park-the slope ring. The earthwork cut and fill is calculated to be balanced.
6. The code requires a 30-meter straight run. Through the original parking lot renovation, there is no need to rebuild the foundation. The location is at the edge to avoid rigid division of the site, and also ensures the integrity of children’s activities in other spaces.
7. Find and collect the original project construction team personnel, restore the missing drawing information of the underground concealed project, and avoid additional costs in the later design and construction.
8. Also, a set of activity equipment is created for young children to round up the programs on site, including five vegetable garden planting ponds designed in rigid corner plots, and a non-powered irrigation interactive system. Kids can learn plant knowledge during play, which meets the idea of “education in play”. The modular climbing frame provides children with rich experiences of drilling, climbing, sliding, and crossing; under the shade of the largest camphor on site, we set up ups-and-downs for sitting, running, and jumping, echoing with the slope ring.
Above are all the responses. The general kindergarten renovation plan has also finished.
The existing canopy trees are all remained. The lush canopy infiltrates the warm sunlight through the leaves, projecting the mottled silhouette of nature which silently guards the “children’s garden”.
▼保留现状树，控制好场地排水后而来的起伏山包造型 The undulating dooms are shaped by remaining the existing trees and controlling the drainage system.
The slope ring creates an open and energetic space for the kindergarten, attracting children of all ages to release their nature together. The simpler space makes more possibilities for later use. The simple eccentric circular element is lifted at one side and naturally forms a gradient slope of 0-20°.
A suspension bridge in the forest is installed between the native arbor. Space builds up the ambition of adventures. Will the little explorer sow the seeds of dream here?
The modular Lego spliced climbing frame allows different activities such as sliding, climbing, drilling. The board railing design is used above the safety height limit to avoid potential safety hazards such as children climbing too high or overturning.
▼平面图 Site Plan
施工过程照片 Construction photos
▼场地灌木清理结束后设计师走场 The designer was reviewing the site after the shrub was cleared
▼硬质基础尽可能的保证二次利用 Hardscape materials are recycled as much as possible
▼保留现状树，解决标高问题 Remain the existing trees and solve the elevation problem
▼设计师现场塑胶图案放样 The designer tested the samples of a plastic pattern on site
▼Hapitor团队围栏安装 Hapitor team fence installation
▼原场地售楼处沙盘及设计范围 Original sales office sand table and design scope
设计时间：2018 年 09 月
建成时间：2019 年 10 月
Project Name: Shanghai Dahua Magic International Kindergarten Renovation Project
Party A: Shanghai Huakun Culture Communication Co., Ltd.
Landscape design: Shanghai Z+T Studio
Design team: Zhang Dong, Tang Ziying, Fan Yanjie, Zheng Jialin, Liu Hongchao, Sun Chuan, Wang Hu, Zhou Shiqi, Zhang Zhexin
Device design and construction: Zhang Tang Hapitor
Project location: Meilan Lake, Baoshan, Shanghai
Design time: September 2018
Completion time: October 2019
Area: about 3100㎡
Photography: Holi Landscape Photography
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