Guimarães Municipality
Guimarães - Portugal
6.000 sqm
Completion Date
1st Prize
Bruno André

The Vermis school project is the renovation and expansion of an existing school. It consisted of a kindergarten and a primary school adapted to the current educational requirements. The preexisting school was in a severely deteriorated condition, and only the main building was to be restored. The relation with the pre-existing building plays an important role in the design of the implantation, using alignments both in plan and volume. The new building presents four distinct volumes, which, despite being intrinsically linked, are visually interpreted as separate objects. These volumes are interconnected at ground floor level by an interstitial mass that joins them together, organizing the interior program.

The layout and orientation of the building, as well as the internal distribution of the program, are naturally related to the solar orientation in order to lay out the spaces in the most favorable way for individual needs for daylighting.
The new school is organized internally by adding to the existing building, which houses four primary school classrooms, and a new volume to complete the primary school with two more classrooms. Diametrically opposite is located the kindergarten group, with the necessary distance for different age groups. Each of these cores also has an associated outdoor space for individualized recreation.

In the central space, we find the main access and distributions as well as support services such as administrative, multipurpose, canteen, storage and sanitary installations. The materialization of the project is inspired by the pre-existence and draws valuable lessons from it, such as the design of openings, relatively controlled and uniformly distributed by the spaces, or the foundation in granite stone, resistant to the school environment. All the essential requirements in terms of sustainability and energy efficiency are also fulfilled with the use of high thicknesses of insulation in walls and roofs, as well as the use of resistant and durable materials such as zinc sheeting.

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