Avenues Shenzhen Early Learning Center transforms a three-story warehouse and parking lot into an Early Learning Center. The concept of ‘connections’ forms the heart of the project, from physical connections in the form of bridges and pedestrian walkways, to visual connections enabled by carefully choreographed atriums strategically carved from the existing warehouse structure.
To create greater connectivity between the Early Learning Center and the other buildings in the campus, Efficiency Lab approached this adaptive reuse project from the perspective of strategic subtraction and addition. A strategic addition is a bridge that passes through a series of existing banyan trees, providing a unique and inspirational path for entering the facility.
Vertical playgrounds descend from the connector bridge, forming a sort of rooftop treehouse environment that weaves through the root structure of the trees. The bridge immerses students in the lush surrounding environment, helping to nurture feelings of empathy towards nature.Inside the Early Learning Center, precise cuts in the existing building facilitate visual connections.
Multi-level atria are cut from floor slabs of the existing building, creating a series of openings arranged to provide diagonal views across all three floors. A main atrium is centered in the middle of the floor plate, infusing natural light into the building. The concept of connections continues throughout the interior, with color-coded learning pods, thresholds, and niches providing children with the duality of partial seclusion and visual connectivity. Glazed walls provide writable surfaces in a fun and interactive learning z one created around the main atrium, while ‘keyhole’ pods serve as gateways from one zone to another.