Friday, January 7, 2011

Hot and sticky in Singapore

by Jandkross

There are a number of things that have deterred us from visiting Australia and New Zealand before, not least of them the grim prospect of the 24 hour flight time.  To make the long journey more tolerable we have decided to stop off on the way and spend a few days in Singapore.

The flights (with Emirates via Dubai), though tedious as expected, went without a hitch and we landed at Changi airport on time at 9.00pm on Monday.  It was hot and humid but not oppressively so.  We took the very reasonably priced airport shuttle bus into the city centre which conveniently delivered us directly to the Ibis hotel.  By the time we had checked in it was 11.00pm but we needed to wind down with a couple of cold beers before bed.  A brief reconnaissance of the streets in the immediate vicinity of the hotel revealed several restaurants still open with tables and chairs on the pavement.  The food they were serving looked appetising but there was a distinct lack of alcohol.

The Ibis, however, had its own bar and whilst it would have been good to escape the air conditioning and sit in the fresh air we ended up returning there and downing a few very welcome Tiger beers.  We signed off the enormous bill for these, mentally making a note not to drink at the hotel bar in future, and fell into bed.

We woke early to a blue sky and found that our room on the 10th floor overlooked not one but two temples, one Hindu, the other Chinese.  Breakfast was not included in the room price but neither of us felt particularly hungry and the complimentary tea and coffee provided in the room was ample preparation for a day's gentle exploring.  It was very hot and humid.  We both seemed to be feeling the effects of jetlag too and so progress was slow.

We strolled through Fort Canning Park, the city's first botanical gardens, admiring the tropical vegetation, enormous trees sprouting long lianas and covered in bromeliads, and some of the buildings erected by the early settlers of Singapore.  Raffles, the founder of Singapore, had a bungalow built on the hill and the British Army had a fort and barracks here.

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Photo by Jandkross

Mikou Design Studio - Bailly School Complex, Saint-Denis , France

Saint-Denis , France
The shape of the roof and the glazed brick give reference to the lanterns in cathedrals.

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn
The Bailly School Complex, on the rue de Bailly, is situated on a site being developed by Plaine Commune who sees the project as an initiator for the reorganization of the district.
The complex forms a wall on the rue de Bailly pulling back in one area to allow for the ramp leading to the main entrance. The ramp is sheltered by the colorful second story awnings.

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn
The brick base extends into an internal brick street which functions as an interspace area to access both schools, the recreation centre, and also serve as the connection to the various functions.
The preschool, the recreational center and the elementary school are connected by an interior street open to the forecourt. Circulation is horizontal and the classrooms, organized north south on two levels, are protected from noise by interior gardens.

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn
Towards the rue de Bailly the facades are glazed to protect the privacy of the children, towards the interior gardens the facades are transparent.

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn

Photo: Florian Kleinefenn
Because of the tall surrounding buildings the design of the roof was a crucial factor of the project. It is the fifth facade, a bright colored pallet, visible from the rue de Bailly by the children.

Drawing courtesy Mikou Design Studio
Site Plan

Color Concept
Site area: 5,200 square meters
Building area: 3,000 square meters
Gross floor area: 7,000 square meters

Completed: 2010
Client: City of Saint-Denis
Architect: Mikou Design Studio
Structural Engineer: INGEROP
Environmental Engineer: TRIBU
Colors Designer: Ruedi Baur

Mikou Design Studio - Bailly School Complex, Saint-Denis , France
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