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Ouangani college 700

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mission new construction – competition
client Vice Rector of Mayotte
project manager Jean de Giacinto architecte, CoCo architecture, Denis Dupuy, Egis, Dardel, Iosis
date 2010
footprint 4200m²
price 10M€ excl. tax
location Ouangani (Mayotte)

The rector of Mayotte launched a major urban redevelopment following a demand by the inhabitants of the overseas department of France in March 2011. The college of Ouangani forms part of this improvement. The population of the island is steadily increasing, and children and young people make up a significant portion. The programme includes teaching spaces for a school of 700, sports facilities, and four staff residences. It was equally necessary to retain an area of land for the future construction of a school canteen.

The site of this project is on the border of the town of Ouangani, on a hill opening to views on three sides: the bay, the town of Barakani and Mount Chiconi.

The site plan was guided by bioclimatic principles: optimal orientation with regards to wind, sun and protection from traffic. The placement of these volumes allows the institution to expand and adapt to the rapid demographic growth of the island. The terraced volumes along the contours of the hill generate a subtle addition to the landscape, while opening up the project to the view beyond. The forms and materials chosen reference the local architecture. Basaltic rock, a symbol of this volcanic island has been widely used for the square, interior circulation and gabion walls. Concrete, treated with a bamboo stamped finish, brings a touch of originality to the facades. Like a second skin, a wooden roof envelopes the volumes. It acts as a sun protector, providing shade and a reduction in noise.

The vertical circulation connects all levels and is the social tie of the project; a meeting place and crossroads. It also plays the role of identifying the various functions within the building. It becomes the backbone to the project, branching out to street level, then down through the pathways or ramps to reach the educational gardens and classrooms. From this central passage the main functions are attached through a set of spaces contrast: full / empty – buildings / gardens – mineral / plant – work / stroll – theory / practice.