FDE Jardim Ataliba Leonel School, São Paulo – SP, 2003

The project for this secondary school is part of a group of projects developed by the fde  – Fundação para o Desenvolvimento da Educação (Foundation for the Development of Education) to define a standard school format and experiment with the application of a prefabricated structural system.

Studio Name: SPBR Arquitetos

Design Team:
Angelo BucciAlvaro Puntoni
Maria Isabel Imbronito
Colin Billings
Ciro Miguel
Juliana Braga
Carolina Gimenez
Tobias Xavier
Omar Dalank

Building Area: 4210 m²
Year: 2006
Location: São Paulo – SP. Brazil

Complementary projects:
Estruturarte (concrete structural engineer)
Adílson Luís da Costa (metal structural engineer)
Eurico Freitas Marques (building services and fire)

Cepolina (foundation)
Ruy Bentes (concrete structural engineer)
Jorge Zaven Kurkdjian (metal structural engineer)

Photography Credits: Nelson Kon

Other Credits:
L’Annunziata e Cia (general contractor)
Speto (art painel)

Jardim Ataliba Leonel School By SPBR Arquitetos - Sheet3
©Nelson Kon

The intervention area is located in the periphery of the Sao Paulo city. The urban landscape in this area is characterized by an endless series of small self-built houses and 4 storey social housing blocks and a total lack of parks or public spaces and equipment.

The dramatic topography where the school was built allowed a panoramical view of the whole neighborhood, specially to the opposite side of the valley – filled with preserved Atlantic nature, as its common in higher grounds.

Jardim Ataliba Leonel School By SPBR Arquitetos - Sheet4
©Nelson Kon

The school was built longitudinally to the street, reaching two corners of the street, giving form to one entire face of its block.

Due to topographical conditions, conciliation between levels of the relief was made necessary. It was chosen, then, to develop the building as a new geography to conciliate different heights. Three plateaus in different levels define clusters for administration, alumni access and the soccer field. This latter serves as a main access to the school in special events, such as weekend activities or holiday public parties.

Jardim Ataliba Leonel School By SPBR Arquitetos - Sheet6
©Nelson Kon

The classrooms are disposed in a unique elevated level, with perimetral accessing galleries at east and west façades. These galleries show the surrounding landscape, and reveal the internal spaces of the school as well. This level passes over the entire extension of the site as a horizontal volume above the three different plateaus of the ground level. The volume interrupts itself when it passes over the soccer field, creating an empty gap. This empty space is surpassed by metallic bridges, sustained by the iron beams of the roof through a system of steel tie rods. The longitudinal façades and these bridges are protected by wooden panels that minimize the effects of sun incidence and rain.

Jardim Ataliba Leonel School By SPBR Arquitetos - Sheet
©Nelson Kon

The empty cluster of the soccer field is where the school meets the city. From ground level until the roof, this empty cube acts as a public square, opened to the neighborhood during weekends and holidays. There, two great panels contain graphite artwork of the Brazilian artist Speto.

This empty space, surpassed by metallic bridges, offers a view to the landscape of Sao Paulo, where the young students of the school can see themselves in the world.

SPBR Arquitetos

Angelo Bucci, since 1989, holds simultaneously two complementary positions: professional, as an architect, and academic, as a professor of architecture.

SPBR, founded in 2003, represents the combination of practice and theoretical knowledge, works and words. In the realm of design, the office engages on different scales: houses and buildings. In the realm of words, it promotes a flourish of dialogues: publications, exhibitions, lectures, and studios. Through this method, the interweaving of works and words, SPBR continuously challenges the premises that support the language of architecture.

SPBR’s projects value structural conception, constructive solutions, economic viability, and mainly, the interaction with the city as the domain of architecture.

SPBR is committed to exploring a threshold of unrealized possibilities, searching meaningful designs, informed by previous experiences, the proper use of resources, respect for the heritage, and boldness regarding our legacy for the future.


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