École Saint-Enfant-Jésus Schoolyard Regeneration, Montreal (Canada)
Picnic tables for a recently regenerated schoolyard. The school offers special services for children with auditory and visual handicaps. The designers were asked to propose and integrate surface textures to make a unique tactile landscape. The project began as a student design-build competition and was fabricated in collaboration with specialists at a precast concrete plant. The project was one of four interrelated projects involving different cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural groups. The projects of this case study demonstrate that a team can be organised around other possible motivators: not only the direct benefits of a completed work, but also a wide scope of indirect benefits and intangibles accrued during the process, including: social and professional network building, education and research opportunities, skills development, public recognition. This makes a case for the use of parallel economies in community-based projects, where knowledge and services are the primary form of exchange, rather than capital.
Research Question: To find an alternative to a generic design solution dictated by budgetary and time constraints; To offer a real-life design opportunity of appropriate scale and relevance to a class of architecture students.
Tutor: Richard Klopp
Students: McGill School of Architecture
Client: École Saint-Enfant-Jésus
Landscape Architect: NIP Paysage
Contractor: Groupe Tremca precast concrete plant