A New Space for Learning and Interaction
American School of Valencia (ASV) has renovated its Atrium, a common area connecting multiple sections of the school building, which is now a flexible learning space and meeting space where educational uses and a vibrant community are interconnected. The renovation works are part of the ASV Master Facility Plan approved four years ago. The Atrium project was developed in cooperation with the local Valencian designer Vicente Navarro. “The Atrium had barely changed since 1986, when the main building was built” ASV Director Michael L. Smith says, “and it required an important upgrade to align with our concept of contemporary learning with the use other flexible learning spaces we are introducing across the school campus.”
The project developed by Vicente Navarro, the school’s Board of Governors and school leadership team creates two differentiated areas in the Atrium: one for individual or small group work, with tables aligned next to the windows, and the circulation area where a modular grandstand and a video wall create an additional learning space for mini-lessons and presentations. “Thanks to the new flooring, walls and design, it looks brighter, open and more welcoming,” Mr. Smith describes, “and we have improved acoustics and connectivity dramatically.”
Before entering the Atrium, visitors entering through the main entrance will see the office area, the Sara Taatem Library, named after a former ASV Director, and the Theater. The main office and the library have new glass enclosures, which substantially increases light and visibility, while the main entrance is now a welcome area that is both functional and comfortable. The renovation work also included new electric, communication and air conditioning systems.
“The first stage of the works were simultaneous to the ASV Summer Program and during that time we realized the leading role of the Atrium in our daily movements”, Smith mentions. “We hope that the ASV community enjoys the newly renovated space and will notice the important effect of the vision of flexible learning spaces we want to extend across all of our school campus.” With this part of the project completed, ASV is now evaluating additional improvements during the academic year to install semi-transparent photovoltaic cells in the skylight to provide a sustainable and renewable energy source for the Atrium and other parts of ASV. All part of the ASV Difference.