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ST ALBANS COLLEGE HAMILTON HALL EXTENSION AND LANDSCAPING

Boogertman + Partners Architects

Landscape  /  Completed
Boogertman + Partners Architects
General and Technical Report of what was done
St. Albans College needed to provide a function area to seat 1000 people for end of year prize giving events and other general events throughout the year. The existing dining hall and adjacent open space was identified for the development into a multi-purpose dining/function hall with sufficient spill-out space.
The site gradient were such that terracing needed to be incorporated to create a level area for the 300m² covered roof extension. The roof extension slopes gently towards the existing façade, creating an open air covered seating area. The floor finish was designed to withstand external factors such and wind and water. The polished concrete finish has proven to be a stylish, robust and low maintenance proposal.
The design approach was to respect existing student movement patterns. The approach to the hall was similar to a spider web. Students would approach the hall from all angles. The need to create a landscaped area that would both serve as a spill-out area for hall activities and not impede on the natural movement patterns was the biggest challenge.
The movement patterns of students were carefully monitored to allow for ‘desire lines’ and strategically placed landscape elements as not to create clutter and allow for ease of flow.
Due to the natural fall of the site, a series of landscaped terraces were created and planted with lawn to create informal seating areas. Internet access along these terraces as well as newly designed circular seating surrounding the existing trees provides essential internet access to all students.
Another design criteria was to create an outdoor gathering space where students and their teachers could gather for the annual ‘journey’ event. The design criteria was to incorporate the school bell to allow each individual student to ring it before he departed on his journey. The design approach was to create an amphitheatre that would allow for the whole school including the parents to celebrate this and other milestone events. The natural drop allowed for circular terraces, with seating height to allow the whole school to gather around and be part each event.
Another design criteria was to design a landscape that would be visually pleasing in the day as well as in the evenings. The design approach was to create overhangs on all steps and terraces and fix linear led lighting along these edges. An illuminous landscape was created avoiding any uplighters that would be ecologically unfriendly.
The design material palette was chosen carefully to create a minimalistic and uncluttered landscape. Materials were chosen to avoid any tripping and slipping. Surfaces flow easily from one to the next with demarcated seating area not obstructing any natural pedestrian flow.
Another design criteria was to create a landscape that was low maintenance. The school indicated that they would be happy to have less shrubs and groundcovers and more natural lawn areas. The existing Stinkwood trees were formalised into a stinkwood forest concept where 20new trees were planted to create a strong identity.
The indigenous false olive indigenous trees were chosen for the lawn terraces. These trees would create a continuous ‘hedge in the sky’ effect, framing the amphitheatre without obstructing any views from the upper terraces on the lower end.

Credits

 110 Clearwater Road, Pretoria South Africa 0081
 St Albans College
 01/2016
 2000 mq
 Boogertman + Partners Architects
 Boogertman + Partners Architects
 Tollig Bouwers
 DG an LEAD consultants
 N/A
 Boogertman + Partners Architects

Curriculum

Boogertman + Partners Architects was established in 1982. With offices in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, Durban, and Kenya, the practice engages in projects throughout Africa continually embracing social, economic, and functional challenges through ‘Excellence by design’.
Having gained national and international acclaim, Boogertman + Partners has successfully completed projects in Mauritius, Egypt and Sudan. Boogertman + Partners have been involved with on-going projects in Ghana, Botswana, Kenya, South Africa, Angola and Zambia for the past few years, as well as numerous design proposals in the Ivory Coast, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Malawi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Boogertman + Partners has also garnered valuable experience in the Middle East with projects and proposals in Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

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