Native architectural style for Goan school
Mumbai-based unTAG Architecture and Interiors have designed the Barefoot School of Crafts in Goa,, which was to construct an affordable, replicable and easily-buildable module for a school promoting local crafts.
Envisioned as a composition of two linear pavilions, the school houses the classrooms/exhibits on one side and a large multipurpose space on the other side, the two separated by a green court and bamboo screens. They reflect the regional architectural style using native materials, local labor, traditional techniques and sensitization to the tropical climate. Apart from creating work opportunities for the local workforce, the firm reinstates Goan art through architecture and simple replicable modular planning.
Bamboo screens with planters act as buffers against heat gain, which helps in the adaptable orientation of the platform. There are well-protected openings with large thatched roof overhangs. Locally-sourced laterite, bamboo, thatch and terrazyme mud floors with bamboo reinforcement make up the material palette. There is minimum use of glass, cement, concrete and aluminum with conventional construction techniques known to native craftsmen used. Minimum solid walls and plastered surfaces make up the linear pavilions with short-spanned structures.
Well-shaded and cross-ventilated spaces with large fenestrations ensure minimum electrical consumption during the day. There is a photovoltaic cell installation above the toilet block, with reed bed treatment for wastewater disposal from the toilets. Percolation pits with gravel beds in the landscape to recharge the water table levels. The pavilions are planned on a replicable cost-effective grid of 4.5 m, which enables adaptation to various site conditions and promotes cross-ventilation.