FLEX A B C D
A visionary project for the daycare centres of the future, where one modular building system can create four architectural expressions. The concept has been developed with focus on the child, and with a common thread running through the design of furniture, fixtures, rooms and façade expressions. The ambition is to set a high standard for the pedagogical settings and provide the child with the right balance between a sense of security and community.
- Design and concept development
FLEX is based on four concepts with flexibility as common denominator
Pedagogy: The pedagogical flexibility is reflected in the design of the individual functions and their place in the whole as well as the possibility of adapting the physical settings to meet changing pedagogical needs. This applies to everyday life, where the number of children and their personal needs may vary, and even within a couple of years, where the number of groups and their size may also vary.
Context: The contextual flexibility applies both to the ability to meet the need for different sizes of buildings as well as their physical adaptation to a given place. The arrangement of units and hubs, fixed and flexible elements, have been designed to be adapted to different contexts, the compact city, the open landscape, the undulating terrain, etc.
Material: Material flexibility is systemised with a catalogue of materials developed specifically for the building system. Here, FLEX Plus+ is also introduced, which is a list of possible additions, adjustments, improvements of materials and alternatives. This makes the concept easily adjustable to context, size, economy, level of ambition and wishes.
Building technology: Building technology flexibility is ensured by the building being based on a financially advantageous modular construction principle. This means that the modules are built at the factory and then shipped to the construction site. This reduces costs and time at the building site, ensures quality and minimises the risk of damage caused by external impacts, weather and wind. The overall arrangement of the modular building with units and hubs is designed to meet current needs, while also ensuring an openness to future changes.
1 FLEX Box: Depth in the inner rooms of the base
2 FLEX Base: Activity in the small community of the group of children
3 FLEX Unit: The large community and proximity in smaller groups
4 FLEX Hub: The assembly point of the daycare centre
5 FLEX Context: Views, separation from and connection with the local area
6 FLEX Plus+: Adaptation and additions as needed
FLEX A – Landscape
FLEX A is a single-level building that positions itself in the landscape and consists of two units and a hub. The units are connected with each other via a FLEX BOX that spatially links the two main functions. The hub serves as a communal hall that can be used for meals and joint activities. The façades are covered in dark grey slate with a wooden terrace around the two units.
The FLEX A concept is the smallest of the four concepts. With two units and a heart, the concept will, as shown, be an extended building. In the project, the building is visualised in a landscape context with a large green area.
FLEX A can be composed in different ways depending on the site-specific conditions. As previously described, the units are of a fixed size and form, while the hub is flexible. This makes it possible to adapt the concept to another context.
FLEX B – Dense-low buildings
FLEX B consists of three units and a node at one level and is located in a dense-low residential area. The three units are located so that there is daylight from all four corners of the world from the hub of the building. This gives the room its special character and role as the assembly room of the daycare centre. The façades are covered with heat-treated wood shavings.
FLEX B works with two sides, one facing the street and one facing the courtyard, where the scale of the façade design is adapted to the children.
FLEX B has many options with its three units. The location of the three units creates intimate outdoor spaces which are in open communication with the hub of the building.
FLEX C – Urban context
Flex C consists of three units, where one unit is of a single level, while the other two units are stacked on top of each other. The units are connected with the hub through a FLEX BOX that spatially links the two main functions. In FLEX C, the hub is of two levels and consists of a double-height room from which you can continue into a unit or look out over the outdoor areas.
FLEX C is located in an urban context, where conditions make it possible to establish a play area on the roof. The building is located next to a road, but drawn back, which ensures that the children arrive safely. The façade of the building is made of heat-treated wood that continues upwards and becomes a railing on the roof. On the roof, the special skylights will help scale down the roof terrace to suit the children.
FLEX C is the second largest of the four variants. With two units stacked on top of each other and one unit of a single level, the idea is that the building will be adaptable to many different contexts.
FLEX D – Suburb
FLEX D consists of four units, where the units are stacked two and two. The concept is seen in a suburban context, where the building is located by a road. The units are connected to the hub via a FLEX BOX that spatially links the two main functions. The hub in FLEX D is a double-height room connecting the two levels of the building in one room and bringing light deep into the core. The façades of the unit are made of cladding tiles, where the hub of the building stands out in a heat-treated wooden façade. With its north-facing skylights, the roof surface can be divided into small zones depending on the design of the building.
FLEX D is the largest of the four variants. With its two levels, it is obvious to use FLEX D for construction in a more urban context where the buildings are closer together.
The purpose of the interior design is a practical and aesthetic solution that reduces ‘dead’ square metres for storage, thus creating more usable square metres for the children to play in. This gives the daycare centre a special character, which creates a very high degree of spatial flexibility around these cores.
The small seating niches allow children to retreat, look in a book or take a break from playing with the others and still feel part of the community through visual contact and physical division – in relation to both the outdoor areas and the indoor spaces. The seating niches can also be used as a workplace for the staff.