Farrer Huxley

The American School

St John’s Wood, London

The project delivered extraordinary playable landscapes where children and young people can explore, discover, play sports and learn outdoors.
 
Formal and informal play opportunities.
 
Type Education & Play
Location St John's Wood, London Borough of Westminster
Scale 1.7 ha (17,000 sqm)
Playground and amenity spaces for primary and secondary departments of central London school
Client The American School in London
Status Completed 2007
Riba Stages 0-7 (Over 3 Phases)
Awards A recognised exemplar school by CABE (now Design Council)
 

 
   Ambition     A Dynamic Playground for a Wide Age Range   The school wanted everything within their singular and constrained site: safe yet challenging environments, and spaces that would appeal to children and young people from ages 3-18.

Ambition

A Dynamic Playground for a Wide Age Range

The school wanted everything within their singular and constrained site: safe yet challenging environments, and spaces that would appeal to children and young people from ages 3-18.

   Impact     A Leader in its Field   The collaboration has resulted in a landscape that is an exact fit with the needs of this school and the particular children and young people they educate. Our work with open-minded staff allowed bespoke components to evolve that added developmental value but were outside the constraints of BS/ EU standards.  The American School has been visited by many designers looking to understand the best practices in play design. It was recognised and published by CABE (now Design Council) as an exemplar destination for play.

Impact

A Leader in its Field

The collaboration has resulted in a landscape that is an exact fit with the needs of this school and the particular children and young people they educate. Our work with open-minded staff allowed bespoke components to evolve that added developmental value but were outside the constraints of BS/ EU standards.

The American School has been visited by many designers looking to understand the best practices in play design. It was recognised and published by CABE (now Design Council) as an exemplar destination for play.

   Approach     Multi-functional and Challenging   We worked in close collaboration with the school to develop bespoke and distinctive environments for a wide range of abilities and all aspects of play and child development.  At primary level, new playhouses along the street boundary invite imagination by providing inspirational shop, house and kitchen spaces.  A boulder wall in the main playground was designed to emulate the natural environment, offering a cognitive challenge or a place to sit and relax a little closer to nature.  The senior playground balances sports education with places for young people to socialise.

Approach

Multi-functional and Challenging

We worked in close collaboration with the school to develop bespoke and distinctive environments for a wide range of abilities and all aspects of play and child development.

At primary level, new playhouses along the street boundary invite imagination by providing inspirational shop, house and kitchen spaces.

A boulder wall in the main playground was designed to emulate the natural environment, offering a cognitive challenge or a place to sit and relax a little closer to nature.

The senior playground balances sports education with places for young people to socialise.