2017 - 2018
- Urban Design
Created in 1961, the Dakar Academy is an International Christian boarding school that serves students K-12 with separate elementary, middle and high school programming. Current enrollment totals 230 students with on-site housing for 40 kids as well as teaching staff.
Situated on a six-acre urban campus, the challenge of the new Campus Master Plan framework is to support the expansion of the Dakar Academy without expanding its physical footprint. The Academy’s Growth Plan targets an enrollment increase to approximately 380 students by 2023 and 575 students by 2030.
With the magnitude of this growth comes an opportunity to re-think and re-define the Dakar Academy. Four strategic questions were considered: What type of programs should be added to the campus to sustain a vibrant community? How do these new programs re-organize the existing site and define new spaces? How can the work be phased so that the school can expand without interrupting its operations? How can the local climate and construction techniques be used to achieve sustainability goals?
These spaces are naturally ventilated, relatively easy and cost effective to build yet provide a maximum usability given Dakar’s climate. The configuration of buildings also maximizes shaded areas. All circulation spaces are outdoors and additional open spaces at the ground floor are open underneath the building. Lastly, we have also considered the placement of the buildings to be able to shade the courtyard and circulation area.