A rethink of a school yard overcomes a problematic obstruction in this clever design 

View of the central area of Collège Saint-Paul's
View of the central area of Collège Saint-Paul's outdoor spaces.

Designed by Taktik Design

From Taktik Design:

 has completely redesigned the exterior schoolyard of Collège Saint-Paul, a high school institution renowned for its sporting vocation located in Varennes, in the suburbs of Montreal near the St. Lawrence River.

Initially and mainly composed of asphalt areas, the schoolyard presented a development problem due to a street that divided the space into two distinct sections.

This street and an adjacent residential lot were purchased by the college to unify the schoolyard and improve its functionality.

The different areas have been designed in relation to the gradation of activities.

A bird's eye view of the project.
A bird's eye view of the project.

Near the college, the lounge area consists of various pieces of furniture, all designed and manufactured by Taktik design, and aimed at practicing calm activities such as socialising, reading, or relaxing.

High tables in solid wood and aluminium serve as meeting or small group workstations.

The long picnic tables made of FSC certified wood, a forest certification system that protects forest ecosystems and rare or threatened wildlife species, and yellow zinc-plated steel allow outdoors dining while protecting students from the sun or rain thanks to the stretched canvases.

To take advantage of the beautiful sunny days, wooden platforms are integrated into the landscaping. The strategic placement of the backrests on the platforms makes it possible to use the furniture while sitting on it as a bench or in lounge chair mode.

The school's newly delineated active sports zones.
The school's newly delineated active sports zones.

The central section of the yard, outlined to serve as an outdoor classroom, is made up of small house-shaped pergolas partially shaded by stretched canvases.

Equipped with alternating long high tables, as well as picnic tables, the space allows for the accommodation of larger groups.

Adjacent to the classrooms, a two-step high elevated area covered with dynamically shaped paving stones and equipped with a luminous bollard supplied with electricity becomes a theatre stage with performances being observed from the green platform.

The course continues with the entertainment area made of synthetic turf allowing the practice of activities with a higher level of intensity.

An outdoor training circuit with different exercise modules – ranging from static and dynamic stretches to balanceis seen alongside a few anodised aluminum ping-pong tables.

The entertainment zone – built-in ping pong tables
The entertainment zone – built-in ping pong tables included.

A colourful 160m running track encircles all elements in the central area.

Next, come the active sports areas which includes a basketball court finished in college colours.

The marking has been developed to allow a subdivision of three sub-fields. A multisport field with synthetic grass surface strips and a space to practice spike-ball are now also available.

Large sports fields are found at the end of the schoolyard with deck hockey and a professional-sized soccer field completing the new facilities.

With the addition of outdoor lighting, these light fixtures are now shared with the surrounding community after college opening hours.

Numerous water retention basins allow for the vitality of theschool yard’s abundant vegetation. These are delineted by large stones selected by the Taktik design team from a quarry in the region.

A gigantic PAUL sign in the emblem colour of the College, in aluminium, proudly sits in the centre of the space, thus marking the new era of this schoolyard!

Credit list

Collège Saint-Paul

Designed by: Taktik Design

Story by: Trendsideas

Photography by: Maxime Brouillet

23 May, 2021

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