Albany Senior High School is a 1300-student Modern Learning Environment (MLE) school located on the edge of the North Shore. The brief for the project was to design a new school that would integrate into the unique qualities of the existing site, whilst also being sufficiently flexible and adaptive to respond to pedagogical developments of the 21st century.
The school teaching and learning spaces are built around ten Learning Communities, each catering for up to 130 students. The highly open and flexible nature of the school is designed to encourage new methods of learning, both individual and group based. With mobile panels, whiteboards and furniture, spaces of any size can be created to cater for smaller groups.
Within the Learning Communities there are meeting room pods, specialist presentation rooms, resource rooms, communal staff workrooms, toilets facilities and food and drinks stations. The specialist classrooms, Science, Art and Technology, are spread throughout the three storey school, between Learning Communities. This ensures strong community interaction between students and staff as they move between spaces and past other Learning Communities.
The provision of flexible spaces continues into the external environment. A large plaza links the teaching block with an existing historic school house, productive gardens and the gymnasium. The outdoor seating is moveable and can be
rearranged, reduced or increased to accommodate for the varying spatial requirements of different activities and student capacities.
The plaza incorporates a shade structure, outdoor stage and seating steps that can be used for formal or informal gatherings, assemblies and general ‘break-time’ uses. A rain garden was incorporated into the campus to filter out impurities and clean the storm water runoff from the car park prior to it exiting the school site.
- 2011 NZIA Auckland Award for Public Architecture
- 2011 Resene Total Colour Awards: Colour Award - Education, Colour Master - Nightingale Award (Top Award)
- 2011 DINZ BeSt Awards: BeSt Awards SILVER - Public and Institutional Spaces