Ziridis Private School New building complex at Spata, Attica, 19 buildings in a 80.000 m2 plot OVERVIEW
The campus in the inclined site was hierarchically conceived in a most prototypical and innovative manner:
Natural Environment (Attica Nature at the neighbouring hill at the top) next to the chapel at top, followed by the Library 2nd floor & Theatre (1st floor) at the top-most building that was unfortunately later not implemented due to (accidental!) change in zoning prescriptions. Secondary school, (gymnnasium-lyceum for elder children) with separate laboratory-research buildings were at the next hierarchical level. Administration building was also located at the same level as the laboratories, essentially opposing practical-administrative and intellectual-scholarly pursuits of the academic institution. The primary school, a three building complex, was located at the next lowest level. Pairs of grades were grouped together in each of the three buildings. At the final stage, an open-theatre, was designed and implemented towards the entrance of the central building, that housed the youngest children of first and second grade. The restaurant building housing also at ground level closed athletic facilities and covered swimming pool was located at the next (lowest) level next to the open athletic fields for the various sports.
Finally, an isolated area was reserved for the nursery school (all classrooms and other facilities in ground floor with special provisions with even smaller more intimate scale for windows etc, private enclosed court.)
The complex also originally included an exposition Centre and closed sports facility for the local community, a small museum, various auxiliary buildings for control and covered recreation, as well as appropriate separate parking facilities for buses, guests and employees, and the mandatory pedestrian and vehicle network for optimal accessibility.
After the successful closed competition, precise functional specifications were met without compromise in the design concept. However, the unfortunate, change in the expected zoning land uses by the state, accidentally precluding building at the top-most area of the plot, necessitated re-design and elimination of the conceptually most critical buildings of chapel, library and theatre. Also later in the implementation process, due to financial constraints, several important buildings such as the nursery school building, the administration and laboratories buildings, as well as the exposition-community centre, were not implemented. The critical architectural plantings on the campus prescribed by the designer to isolate the campus and appropriately frame and complement the buildings were also unfortunately not implemented.