Cheré Botha is a government school for learners on the autism spectrum and with intellectual disabilities. This project is defined by a series of collective forms; shared spaces where social and educational interaction can take place, spaces appropriate for children like these who are prone to respiratory diseases, spaces that can protect from the strong wind and rain of Cape Town.
The school is divided into six sections: an administration building, four classroom blocks for learners of various age groups and one block with the hall, kitchen and workshops. Each of the classroom blocks is designed around a shared space which is expressed through a timber A-frame. These collective spaces are used in different ways, depending on the age group of the learners; from play equipment for younger kids to vocational training for the older ones. These roofed outdoor spaces allow the kids to play and learn outside even in adverse weather conditions. These collective forms becomes the social heart of the school and the origin of urban connectivity.
The horizontality of the canopy around the arrival court is contrasted with the verticality of the A-frame structures and the hall. The sculptural volumes of the hall and workshops with its characteristic roof profile are the central moments of the architectural composition. These two volumes are clad in corrugated iron and rise like cumulus clouds from the datum of the canopy at their base. The interior of the hall is triangulated in section just like the A-framed spaces. As another triangulated space, the hall becomes an exaggerated version of other collective forms. Openings for light are carefully arranged to ensure a low glare interior.
Beyond the hall is an exercise court, articulated by a horizontal canopy and open to the landscape and the mountains in the distance.
Adam Clemens Wolff Architects, Alex Coetzee Wolff Architects, Antony Vervoort Wolff Architects, Carlheinz Von Geyso Wolff Architects, Chris Mulder Wolff Architects, Dave Southwood Wolff Architects, Heinrich Wolff Wolff Architects, James Du Plessis Wolff Architects, Lauren Oliver Wolff Architects, Maria Wolff Wolff Architects, Mias De Vries Wolff Architects, Radinka Mulder Wolff Architects, Sophie Zimmermann Wolff Architects, Temba Jauch Wolff Architects