British firm, John McAslan + Partners (JMP) has designed a new building for the British School in Rio de Janeiro (BSR). The £10 million building accommodates a multi-use hall (the social and sports hub for the new facility), classrooms, landscaped outdoor class-rooms, science labs, and a sixth form common room, as well as supporting accommodation.
The British School in Rio de Janeiro sits adjacent to the main 2016 Rio Olympic Games Barra site and as such, the new building enjoyed a unique inauguration when completed in July 2016. BSR served as a preparation camp for Team GB for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and was able to offer up its impressive range of facilities, including a 50m swimming pool, a 3G AstroTurf pitch and the new multi-use sports hall, as well as providing medical, physio and operational areas.
“The students, staff and parents love the openness of the campus, appreciating the details which have resulted in an impressive statement for our school”
One of the key design challenges for the new three-storey, low-energy building for JMP was to incorporate the volume of the triple-height main hall: designed to Sports England specifications. It has an internal area of 18m x 33m, accommodating a three-court sports facility, with a clear playing area of 31m, along with a second-floor spectator balcony.
The large multi-use hall accommodates volleyball, basketball, badminton and futsal, with a sprung floor for gymnastics and dance. This space, featuring retractable, tiered bleacher seating, is also used for large presentations, ceremonies, school productions and graduation ceremonies.
Flexible teaching spaces reflect the ethos and values of BSR. Classrooms, which benefit from external balcony access, are organised in back-to-back clusters encouraging collaborative and creative learning, or in a horseshoe fashion to facilitate discussion and debate.
"The design of the new Barra building by John McAslan + Partners follows our original brief for facilities that are fit for purpose, as well as being iconic and memorable. The students, staff and parents love the openness of the campus, appreciating the details which have resulted in an impressive statement for our school,” commented John Nixon, Director of The British School Rio de Janeiro.