Casa da Árvore by Contaminar Arquitetos: An Elementary School ingrained with Nature

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Casa da Árvore

The treehouse is the place of imagination where the idea of being in contact with nature and discovery is born and instills interest in learning from concepts aligning with school methodologies. Casa da Árvore is an elementary school project conceived by the design team of Contaminar Arquitetos in Leiria, Portugal. It is designed as a place where a child takes their first step towards developing contact with the world of architecture relating to Nature.

Casa da Árvore
Casa da Árvore

The project is conceptualized around nature and was initiated with the thought of connecting classrooms with the outer areas. The school complex is designed with large glazed windows and represents the classrooms as an extension of the exterior space. The concept is accentuated with more open spaces like patios and porches that let children enjoy and utilize the overall space. The patio furniture plays along in guiding the development of the whole structure.

Casa da Árvore

Materiality that is close to nature has been a conscious approach for the Casa da Árvore project to abide by the design theme of the elementary school. Natural cork is used as a cladding material in the eaves which connects the user with nature. The concept of stereotomy is incorporated into the facade similar to the pieces arranged in a puzzle that creates an effect of rhythm and movement.

Casa da Árvore
Casa da Árvore

The concrete of the walls is treated in a specific way that reminds us of the roots of the trees. It reinforces the image of Casa da Árvore as a structure resting on the pavement in earth tones supported with inert materials. Ample green spaces are incorporated into the design that breaks the monotony and provides spots for children to connect with mother nature. Play areas with swings are planned for children to enjoy themselves along with learning at the school.

Casa da Árvore
Casa da Árvore

Like any other project by the firm Contaminar Arquitetos, this project Casa da Árvore also carves its own identity that is nature-oriented and keeps the users surrounded with greenery and natural materials. 

Fact Sheet

Project Name: Elementary School – Casa da Árvore

Location: Leiria, Portugal

Total Area: 752,00 sqm

Firm Name: Contaminar Arquitetos

Design Team:  Joel Esperança, Ruben Vaz, Eurico Sousa, Joaquim Duarte, Filipa Pimpão, Ana Carolina and Sara Fernandes 

Image Credits: Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

Written by Aastha Trivedi

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