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Papakowhai School

Papakowhai School is in growth mode, with the school reaching a full student roll capacity and continuing to grow due to the increasing population from the adjacent Aotea Block subdivision.

Resene paints and colours feature at Papakowhai School

With more children than space, four new classrooms were needed to give the school sufficient space for current and future students.

The four new classrooms are located on the upper playing field area. This area is accessed from the lower main school level via a new external accessible ramp and stairway. The classrooms themselves are arranged in an ‘L’ shape around a north facing play area and are accessed externally via covered timber deck walkways.

Resene paints and colours at Papakowhai School

Hard landscaping to the site included retaining walls to the eastern boundary, a large playing court and the new accessible ramp and stair linking the main school grounds with the newly developed top field classrooms.

These exciting teaching spaces are occupied by the year 3-4 students. The classrooms are designed for maximum sunlight and daylight access. Classrooms and shared spaces alike are passively ventilated via opening clerestory windows and cross ventilation. Each ‘arm’ of the ‘L’ shape has two classrooms, with a shared teaching space and wet area in between. The tough, durable and exciting shared wet area spaces extend the possibilities for small group learning when closed off from the classrooms. These spaces also link the two classrooms when fully open contributing to the diverse range of teaching environments possible, consistent with the modern learning environment strategy valued by Papakowhai’s teaching staff and Board of Trustees.

Resene paints and colours at Papakowhai School

Large strong blocks of yellows, greens, reds and blues are used to celebrate the simple modulation of the classroom façade achieved under the project’s modest budget. The coloured panels are intended to identify each classroom improving wayfinding for the school’s students.

The ‘yellow’ block features Resene Flashback (fire orange), Resene Wild Thing (bright yellow gold) and Resene April Sun (gold orange;, the ‘green’ block Resene Lush (earthy olive green), Resene Moxie (shamrock green) and Resene Limerick (Irish green); the ‘blue’ block Resene Limitless (azurite blue), Resene Bowie (cyan blue) and Resene Aquarius (airy blue); and the ‘red’ block Resene Bullseye (cherry red), Resene Red Hot (primary red) and Resene Dynamite (blue red).

Papakowhai School wins Education Colour Maestro Award in Resene Total Colour Awards 2013

The coloured grip panels celebrate the location of the main interior teaching walls within each of the classrooms while repeating the geometry consistent within the exterior window joinery.

A ribbon of multi-toned green powdercoated aluminium panels guide the children from the main school up the accessible ramp and stairway to the newly developed four classroom block. Resene Sonyx 101 semi-gloss waterborne in Resene Half Tea (complex neutral) is the main exterior wall colour and is used consistently throughout the entire school complemented by Resene Eighth Tea (milky beige) on soffits and fascia.

Red classroom interior

This project won a Resene Total Colour Education Colour Maestro Award and the judges thought: “The four blocks are identified by the use of colour, but in a sophisticated way using varying strengths of colour complementing each other in each block. The colour communicates and improves wayfinding for students. The balance of the scheme is kept with the neutrals allowing the coloured blocks to shine, intensified by their geometric pattern. As the colours are north facing they get diffused and lively play in the light.”

Architectural specifier: Vorstermans Architects Ltd
Building contractor: Hanna Building Consultants Ltd
Winner: Resene Total Colour Education Colour Maestro Award
Project: Resene Total Colour Awards 2013
From the Resene News – issue 1/2014

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Resene Total Colour Awards 2013


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