Client: National Building Museum (Washington, D.C.)
Partners: Perkins + Will and Triumph Modular
Architectural Excellence: Our goal was to design a research-based healthy, sustainable modular classroom, where children are inspired to learn and teachers are inspired to teach. Sprout Space offers flexibility for both group and individual work. It also encourages indoor-outdoor education using large windows and patio doors to allow easy outside access. Design elements such as exterior panelized walls with built-in marker boards, garden patios, water cisterns and rain screen panels allow the building itself to be utilized as a teaching tool. The panelization continues inside the classroom with marker boards and tack boards integrated into the walls giving the teacher the freedom to use any wall as a teaching wall. The classroom is made up of two modules offset by 8 feet to allow for a breakout learning space, bathroom/storage closet and mechanical room. A butterfly shaped roof catches rain water and allows daylight in through clerestory windows to creates a space that feels larger than its 1000SF footprint.
Technical Innovation + Sustainability: We set out to flip the current trend of schools using temporary classrooms for permanent needs with a modular classroom designed and built to a 40 year life-cycle. Innovative/sustainable highlights include: solar panels pre-mounted and attached at the factory, mechanical plug and play system for a reduction of onsite installation time, fabric ducts for nearly silent air distribution and a visual teaching aid allowing students to see when the duct is inflated indicating the HVAC is running and thereby creating awareness, an envelope system that is nearly 98% thermally broken as opposed to the industry standard of 93%, providing better thermal comfort and lower energy costs, finish material choices that are zero VOC, non-toxic and formaldehyde free, lighting that utilizes daylight harvesting to adjust light levels in the classroom when natural light is present, 4 kW Photovoltaic Array, Rain Water Cisterns, Rain Screen, antimicrobial flooring, FSC Lumber and low flow plumbing fixtures.
Cost Effectiveness: Sprout Space was constructed to an approximate 97% level of completion in the factory greatly reducing the amount of site work required. Furthermore, onsite seaming of the building was designed to allow for completion without the need for any special knowledge, tools or training beyond typical modular building installation. A high efficiency 17 SEER heat pump split system with Energy Recovery Ventilator was used for the HVAC. The entire system, including the condensing unit, is factory installed and ready for use at site without any additional connections or refrigerant line installation. The exterior rain screen panels utilize commercially available off the shelf products and was designed to maximize material yield. Sprout Space offers occupants an inviting and engaging environment while lending the ability to be relocated for those whose needs are dynamic with shifting demographics. It could be a temporary preschool classroom today and a revolutionary college laboratory tomorrow.
Video Fly-Through can be viewed here.