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Farming Kindergarten

Farming Kindergarten by Vo Trong Nghia Architects, The Kindergarten for 500 preschool children, situated next to a big shoe-factory, is a prototype of the sustainable education space in tropical climate. The building is designed for the children of factory workers within low-budget. The concept of building is “Farming Kindergarten” with continuous green roof, providing food and agriculture experience to Vietnamese children, as well as safe outdoor playground.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-02-Hiroyuki-Oki-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Farming Kindergarten is a prototype of the sustainable education space in tropical climate. The green roof is triple-ring-shape drawn with a single stroke, creating three courtyards, which serve as safe playground for children. Passive design methods are comprehensively applied in this two-story building including but not limited to: green roof, PC-concrete louver for shading, using recycle materials, water recycling, solar water heating and so on.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-04-Hiroyuki-Oki-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

The Vietnamese firm offers yet another impressive sustainable project that suits the particular local climate and needs. Located in the country’s Đồng Nai Province, the Farming Kindergarten sports a huge green roof, a water-recycling and irrigation system, and is cooled passively.

The Farming Kindergarten measures 3,800 sq m (40,902 sq.ft) The kindergarten is designed to cater to a maximum of 500 children. The building is dominated by a triple-ring green roof The green roof also encloses three ground-level secure playgrounds.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-05-Hiroyuki-Oki-800x1200 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

The Farming Kindergarten was built to serve up to 500 of the children of low-income factory workers based at an adjacent shoe factory. The factory is owned by the Pou Chen Corporation, which makes footwear for Nike, Adidas, Puma, Reebok, and several other major footwear brands.

The two-story building’s overall form is dominated by a triple-ring green roof that encloses three secure ground-level playgrounds. The green roof also serves as a playground (don’t worry, there are large fences), and sports a 200 sqm (2,152 sq.ft) vegetable garden used to teach the kids to grow their own greens.

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© Hiroyuki Oki

The kindergarten’s interior is kept cool with cross ventilation via ample operable windows and concrete louvers, in addition to the insulating effect of the large green roof. This combination is presumably effective as the building sports no air-conditioning despite the tropical climate. Waste water from the nearby factory is also recycled and routed for irrigation and use in the toilets, and a solar hot water heater produces warm water.

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© Hiroyuki Oki

The Farming Kindergarten was constructed in 2013 at a cost of $500 per square meter, including all finishes and equipment, which Vo Trong Nghia Architects says is relatively cheap for such a building in Vietnam. The building is one of the pilot projects of LOTUS, the green rating by Vietnam Green Building Council.

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© Hiroyuki Oki

Vo Trong Nghia Architects:

Vietnam historically an agricultural country is facing changes as it moves to a manufacturing based economy, taking its toll on the environment. Increased droughts, floods and salinization jeopardize food supplies, while numerous motorbikes cause daily congestion and air pollution in the cities. Rapid urbanization deprives Vietnamese children of green lands and playgrounds, thus relationship with nature.

Farming Kindergarten is a challenge to counter these issues. Located next to a big shoe factory, and designed for 500 children of the factory’s workers, the building is conceived as a continuous green roof, providing food and agriculture experience to children, as well as an extensive playground to the sky.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-13-Hiroyuki-Oki-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

The green roof is a triple-ring shape drawn with a single stroke, encircling three courtyards inside as safe playgrounds. Recently, an experimental vegetable garden was realized on its top. Five different vegetables are planted in 200m2 garden for agriculture education.

All functions are accommodated under this roof. As the roof lowers to the courtyard it provides access to the upper level and vegetable gardens on top- the place where children learn the importance of agriculture and recover connection to nature.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-15-Hiroyuki-Oki-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Environmental Strategies:

The building is made of a continuous narrow strip with two side operable windows which maximize the cross ventilation and natural lighting. Additionally, architectural and mechanical energy-saving methods are comprehensively applied including but not limited to: green roof as insulation, green facade as shading and solar water heating. These devices are designed visibly and play an important role in the children’s sustainable education. Factory wastewater are recycled to irrigate greenery and flush toilets.

As a result, the kindergarten is operated without air conditioners in the classrooms despite being located in a harsh tropical climate. According to post-occupancy record issued 10 months after completion, the building saves 25% of energy and 40% of fresh water compared to baseline building performance, reducing its running cost greatly.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-16-Hiroyuki-Oki-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Hiroyuki Oki

Cost-Efficiency:

The building is designed for low-income factory workers’ children, therefore construction budget is quite limited. Therefore, the combination of local materials (ex. bricks, tiles) and low-tech construction methods are applied, which also help minimize the environmental impact as well as promote local industry. Thanks to simple rigid frame with economical materials, the construction cost per one square meter is only 500 USD including finishes and equipment, which is competitively cheap even within the Vietnamese market.

Farming-Kindergarten-By-Vo-Trong-Nghia-Architects-17-Gremsy-759x506 Farming Kindergarten / Vo Trong Nghia Architects

© Gremsy

Project Data:

Project name: Farming Kindergarten
Location: Biên Hòa, Dong Nai, Vietnam
Coordinates: 10.936653, 106.810469
Type: Kindergarten
Project Area:

  • Gross floor area: 3,800 sqm
  • 1F area: 2,615.9 sqm
  • 2F area: 1,110.6 sqm
  • Site Area: 10,650 sqm

Status: Built
Completion Year: 2013

Awards:

  • 2015 – ArchDaily Building of the Year Award – Category: Educational Architecture – Winner
  • 2015 – Green Good Design Award – Category: Green Architecture – Winner
  • 2014 – World Architecture Festival Award – Category: Nursery Infant Schools – Finalist

The people:

Client / Owner / Developer: Pou Chen Vietnam
Architects: Vo Trong Nghia Architects – 8F, 70 Pham Ngoc Thach street, Ward 6, District 3, Ho Chi Minh City
Principal Architects: Vo Trong Nghia, Takashi Niwa, Masaaki Iwamoto
Project Team: Tran Thi Hang, Kuniko Onishi
Contractor: Wind and Water House JSC
Green Building Consultant: Melissa Merryweather
Cfd Analysis: Environment Simulation Inc.
Text Description: © Courtesy of Vo Trong Nghia Architects,
Images: © Vo Trong Nghia Architects, Gremsy, Hiroyuki Oki

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