THE NORTHSTAR SCHOOL SHANMUGAM ASSOCIATES
Livingetc India|November 2020
Experimental, pragmatic and rational, is how A Shanmugam, Raja & Santhosh like to describe their work

Based out of Trichy and Chennai, Shanmugam Associates Started in 1982 under Ar. A Shanmugam the firm today has a rich international experience in the exploration of various typologies. Their architecture is simple, rational, powerful, experimental and pragmatic. “The essence is to deliver minimal and timeless solutions taking into consideration sensitivity to nature, economic realities and client’s requirement with a focus on sustainability.”

They have built a school with a gross built area of 33,000 sq ft in Rajkot, Gujarat. The client’s initial brief demanded that a “very important part of every child’s experience in Northstar be shaped by architecture. School is an enjoyable and enriching part of life where students can safely explore their True North” - reads the vision of The Northstar School, a progressive institution established to transform the educational ecosystem.

The project sits on the south eastern corner of a 17.8-acre barren site located adjoining the RK University campus on Rajkot-Bhavnagar highway. The semi-arid climate of north-west India, dusty yet windy site conditions, 20- 30 days of monsoons in Rajkot and supply of STP water from RK University were influential contextual pointers. Overall master planning was conceived integrating three phases of development of which only Phase -1 is built. Open- ended corridors, building orientation and future development were factored into the overall planning. Key functions are accommodated in ground and first floors to keep the built space child friendly.

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