Kindergarten of Longfor Gaobeidian: Active House for kids

The Kindergarten of Longfor Gaobeidian is a kindergarten in Hebei Province, China designed by MoChen Architects & Engineers for Longfor Group. The project won an Active House Award at the 2018 Active House Symposium. Below Mr Lai of MoChen Architects & Engineers answers a few questions on behalf of the Longfor Gaobeidian kindergarten project.

Your project won an award at the Active House Awards this year, congratulations. Why did you submit your project for the Active House Awards?

首先祝贺您的项目在今年的Active House大奖中获奖。您为什么要提交这个项目去参加Active House大奖?

This project brings together our in-depth thinking on what is sustainable and benign architecture, and it is a very good opportunity to try to find solutions for these thoughts in architecture and engineering technology. These thoughts and attempts are completely consistent with the concept of Active House.

这个项目汇集了我们对什么是可持续的良性建筑这个问题很多深入的思考,也是一次非常好的机会尝试为这些思考在建筑学和工程技术方面找到解决问题的方法,这些思考和尝试和Active House的理念完全一致。

What does winning the Active House Award mean for your project/organization? What would you say are some of the key features that make Active Houses better buildings?

这次获得Active House大奖对您的项目/团队意味着什么?你认为使主动式建筑成为更好的建筑的一些关键特征是什么?

This award is not only an affirmation of the work we have done, but also an incentive to continue to try these aspects in the future. Compared with some other green buildings, Active House not only emphasizes energy saving and environmental protection, but also emphasize health and comfort, and emphasize that buildings serve people. To achieve Well-being is to truly design for people, which is the same as the traditional Chinese concept of unity between man and nature.

这次获奖既是对我们已经进行的工作的肯定,也是对未来继续在这些方面进行尝试的一种激励。主动式建筑和其它一些绿色建筑相比,不仅强调节能和环保,而且更加强调健康性和舒适性,强调建筑是为人服务的。以实现Well-being为目标就是真正的设计以人为本,这和中国传统的天人合一理念也完全相同。

At this year’s symposium, there was a lot of talk about digitalisation and technology changing our buildings. How does your project use these?

在今年的研讨会上,有很多关于“数字化和技术正在改变我们的建筑”的讨论。那么您的项目是如何使用这些新技术的?

Only when the application of technology serves people can reflect its value. We adopt appropriate application strategies in the design. The project is a kindergarten, the atrium is its core public activity space, open skylights were installed on the roof to let in sunlight naturally. Through computer aid, the area and position of skylight are carefully deliberated to achieve a perfect balance between daylighting, ventilation and energy saving. The interior of the building is equipped with an efficient fresh air system to eliminate haze, which can still provide the best indoor air environment under the condition of external climatic restrictions. At the same time, the building adopts the structural design with high gas tightness to achieve the minimum energy consumption. Here, we hope to create a natural, comfortable and healthy environment for children to grow up with the aid of technology.

技术的应用终归服务于人,才能体现其价值,在设计中我们采取了适度的应用策略。项目是一个幼儿园,中庭是其核心公共活动空间,在屋顶设置了可开启采光天窗,让阳光能自然照射进来。通过计算机辅助,天窗的面积和位置经过细致的推敲,达到采光通风与节能的完美平衡。建筑内部安装了高效能除霾新风系统,在外部气候限制的条件下依然能提供最好的室内空气环境。同时,建筑整体采用了高气密性构造设计,实现最少的能源消耗。在这里,我们希望通过技术的辅助,为儿童营造一个自然、舒适、健康的成长环境。

How do you think we can convince more people of the importance of healthy buildings? How does your project address this important aspect?

您认为我们如何让更多的人相信健康建筑的重要性?在这个重要的方面您的项目是如何处理的?

Now the concept of health has been deeply rooted in the hearts of people. Our project is kindergarten, where children spend most of their growth time, health becomes more important. First, we think more about design strategies from this perspective, especially in terms of natural lighting and air. Second, we always pay attention to people’s actual experience in space, not only the physical space construction but also the internal environment. Thirdly, we all choose ecological and environmental protection materials in the project. We believe that a truly healthy and comfortable space is the most persuasive.

现在健康的理念已经深入人心,我们的项目是幼儿园,儿童的大部分成长时间在这里度过,健康显得更加重要。其一我们更多地从这一角度思考设计策略,尤其在自然采光和空气方面。其二,我们始终关注人在空间中的实际体验,不仅是物理空间营造也是内部环境感受。其三,在项目中我们全部选用生态环保材料。我们相信,一个真正健康舒适的空间最具有说服力。

Active House is all about comfort, energy and environment. How does your project incorporate these aspects?

主动式建筑是关于舒适、能源和环境的。这些方面在您的项目中是如何体现的?

In terms of comfort, the design creates better natural lighting and air conditions. Due to the limited land used for the construction of the project, we reserved all the rooms facing south for children’s living rooms, and set up a sunny atrium in the middle of the project to maximize the creation of natural lighting conditions and improve the natural airflow. With the help of the air conditioning system, we created a comfortable internal environment. In terms of energy, the project can reduce energy consumption by optimizing the insulation layer, reducing the thermal bridges, and providing better air tightness. Sun-shading facilities installed for the exterior windows to reduce the effect of thermal radiation in the summer. The structure also takes full advantage of natural light sources and uses energy-saving LED illumination devices in public areas. The heat recovery efficiency of fresh air unit reaches 75%. Eventually, through optimizing design, the energy consumption is only 9kWh/ (m2a) for heating in winters and 17kWh/ (m2a) for air-condition in summers. In terms of environment, green environmental protection materials used in the interior of the building, and the external wall painted with better self-cleaning performance, which can reduce surface treatment and facilitate daily cleaning and maintenance. In order to save water, water-saving sanitary appliances used inside the building, and a drip irrigation system is equipped for outdoor landscapes.

在舒适度方面,设计创造了更好的自然采光和空气条件。由于项目建设用地比较局促,我们将南向房间全部留给儿童生活用房,并在中部设置阳光中庭,最大限度的创造自然采光条件并且改善自然空气流动,借助空调系统的辅助,营造舒适的内部环境。在能源方面,通过对保温层的优化设计,降低热桥提高建筑整体气密性,减少能源损耗。建筑外窗设置遮阳设施在夏季减少热辐射对室内环境的影响。在建筑中更多利用自然光源,在公共空间采用节能型LED照明灯具。新风机组热回收效率达到75%。最终通过设计,实现每年冬季采暖能耗仅9 kWh/(m2a),夏季制冷能耗仅17kWh/(m2a)。在环境方面,建筑室内采用绿色环保材料,外墙为自洁性能较好的涂料外墙,减少表面处理同时易于日常清洁维护。为了节约用水,建筑内部全部采用节水型卫生器具,室外景观采用滴灌系统。

One of this year’s speakers at the symposium suggested that as prices go up, so do the expectations of homebuyers. Do you think the Active House label can help purchasers identify good projects?

今年研讨会上的一位发言者建议,随着房价上涨,购房者的预期也会相应的上升。您认为主动式建筑的标签能不能帮助买家筛选出合适的项目?

I think so. On the one hand, this label is an effective classification of buildings. Active House, with its unique concept of making buildings more friendly to people and healthier to the environment, and it can provide a better quality of life than ordinary buildings, which is the best gift for purchasers. On the other hand, it is also a kind of guidance. It enables development enterprises, designers and the owners to have a deeper understanding and experience of the relationship between architecture and health, to pay more attention to a healthy life.

我想这是肯定的。一方面,这个标签是对建筑进行的有效分类,ActiveHouse以独特的理念使建筑对人更友好,环境对人更健康,可以比一般的建筑提供更有质量的完美生活,这是对购房者的最好的馈赠。另一方面,也是一种引导。使得开发企业、设计师、最终用户都能够更加深入地去了解和体会建筑与健康的关系,从而更加注重健康的生活。

If you were to give one piece of advice to next year’s contestants, what would it be?

如果您要给明年的参赛者一条建议,您会说些什么?

What I want to say is that no matter how advanced technology human beings master in the future, people will always be the first in architectural design. Everything in architecture should be people-oriented.

我想说的一点是:不论未来人类掌握了多么先进的技术,在建筑设计中,人永远是第一位的。建筑的一切都应该以人为本。

Read more about the kindergarten of Longfor Gaobeidian here

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