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The Courtyard Kindergarten designed by MAD Architects is located on the site of a quartet building built in 1725. The design team has succeeded in preserving the artifact, reusing existing buildings and reconciling between two traditional values – modern, creating a space both humane and educational at the same time.

1/ Rule of 1/3

Construction information
Category: Educational works
Location: Beijing, China
Design team: MAD Architects
Year: 2019

2/ Building information

The Courtyard Kindergarten in Beijing designed by MAD Architect has been started to build. The building is located on the site of a quartet building built in 1725. The location of the site provides MAD Architects with both opportunities and challenges in protecting space and reusing existing buildings.

The courtyard is surrounded by “a floating roof layer” creating “a story of multi-story urban history, where symbiosis between the old and the new”. The terrace is designed as “a place full of magic, a dynamic playground, a symbol of infinite freedom and imagination.”

Playground on the roof of Courtyard Kindergarten

MAD Architect uses soft and flexible lines to create a colorful playground for children. It is also the venue for outdoor activities and sports. The southwest of the building has undulating surfaces such as hills and plains, forming a playful landscape with high and low terrain.

The mix between tradition and modernity

Underneath the roof are open teaching spaces including the library, small hall and gym. The openness of the space provides “a free and inclusive atmosphere” for 400 students here. The location of the study spaces opens up historic building blocks creating the old-new opposition; At the same time, allow children to better understand the changes of time and space.


The learning space opens up historic blocks

Open learning space for Courtyard Kindergarten

The layout and appearance of the structure is influenced by the need to protect and respect the three existing ancient trees in the construction site. That’s why MAD Architects create courtyards to bring natural light into the building.

The courtyard surrounds the existing ancient trees at the site

“In ancient Beijing, there was a folk saying:” The upper chamber is posted “(Three days without beating, removing roof tiles). This sentence is about naughty children who have not been warned for a long time, so they are not afraid, climb on the roof of the house to turn the tiles, play. From there we can see, the roof is a mysterious place, attracting children. My ideal kindergarten is not an amusement park, or a shelter. It is objective and realistic, but must go beyond reality, providing space for curiosity and imagination. ” – Ma Yansong, director of MAD Architect shared.

See the gallery of construction images here:













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