Chilean school by Sebastián Irarrázaval aims to protect and inspire vulnerable people
A school for young, vulnerable people in the outskirts of Santiago, called the Integral Stimulation Center, is Chile’s latest piece of education architecture by Sebastián Irarrázaval
Commissioned by the Isabel Aninat Echazarreta Foundation, a charity that supports vulnerable people, including children and young people with disabilities, this new school is designed by architect Sebastián Irarrázaval. Situated on the outskirts of Santiago in Chile, the impressive new piece of education architecture features its creator’s signature approach of clean, geometric forms and knack for modern, minimalist spaces.
A crisp, white, concrete composition of low and tall volumes, the Integral Stimulation Center unites a variety of spaces, including classrooms, laboratories, a gymnasium, a chapel and a heated pool. Functions are divided into clusters and designed to cater to specific student groups and special educational and mobility needs.
Located in the neighbourhood of Talagante, the new school offers a protective environment for vulnerable people. It also provides a range of facilities designed to stimulate the cognition of its pupils, through formal and informal learning experiences.
‘We proposed to accommodate these varied programmes in the manner of a walled citadel that would provide children with a protective environment, while allowing the coexistence of not only these diverse programmatic units, but also of different forms of movement through the interior: some more hierarchical and orderly, others more free and labyrinthine to encourage fortuitous encounters,’ says Irarrázaval.
The two taller buildings flag up the main entrance and the chapel, respectively, while operating as orientation points for the school’s users. §