Grandview Outdoor Classroom

British Columbia

The Grandview Outdoor Classroom was completed in 2001 as part of a pro-bono commission to provide covered space suitable for intimate and informal learning experiences at Grandview Elementary, an inner-city school in Vancouver.

The pavilion's modest scale belies its presence in the landscape - a trick accomplished with the use of a heavy and familiar wood materials and the its straightforward and legible structural logic. These are familiar pieces to someone from British Columbia, put together in a strange way.

Parallel to the effort of specificity of place that the roof is meant to evoke, the ground plane was sculpted in concrete to further differentiate the classroom from its more banal surroundings. In this classroom, ledges are seats, column bases are backrests, and steps are accepting of skateboards - as is appropriate in this urban community.

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