MWITO PRE-PRIMARY SCHOOL//  

Project type //

Architectural design and construction of educational facility

Location // 

Karusimbi Cell, Bushenge Sector, Nyamasheke District, Western Province, Rwanda

Team/Stakeholders //

Nerea Amoros Elorduy - Lead Architect 

Bruce Engel - Architect

Granite Construction and Consult – Contractor

Kigali modern - indoor and outdoor furniture

Funding//

Westrock International

​Beneficiaries/End users//

Inhabitants of Bushenge sector

Description//

The public pre-primary school of Mwito – Nyamasheke district, Rwanda – sits on a steep plot, slightly lower than the primary school, and enjoys views over Lake Kivu, the rice fields on the bay and neighbouring Eastern DRC. 

Three stimulation rooms, one kitchen, a set of composting toilets, a multipurpose space, several semi-covered play areas and the open playground compose this stimulating Early Childhood Development facility. Their design aims at a lower carbon footprint. It is made mainly of the upcycling of materials from a dismantled coffee factory in Kigali. If we couldn't use upcycled materials for an element, we purchased them near the site's vicinity. 

The design uses the characteristics of the site to the benefit of the young pupils. The steep slope helps to seclude the pre-primary playground, which snugs between the new construction and the terraced slope that doubles as an amphitheatre. This move prevents the use of substantial retaining walls and extra railings. Besides, plants and other landscaping mechanisms retain soil, absorb run-off and create a stimulating environment.

The three stimulation rooms all have overflow learning spaces in the semi-covered areas, enjoy natural overhead light, cross ventilation and views onto the small play areas and the lake. The colours, materials, arrangement of patterns and textures, doors and nooks for quiet time and playing are all designed to become an added educator for the young pupils and their teachers.