A showcase nursery school
Maria Giulia Zunino
Fabrizio Ceccardi, Stefano Torreggiani
Studio di architettura Tiziano Lugli
A bright splash of colour in the landscape announces the presence of this child-friendly school on the edge of the Villa Vicini park in Fiorano Modenese. Designed by architects in close cooperation with child psychologists and educationalists, this bright, functional and stimulating complex is capable of accommodating around 60 children aged from 9 months to 3 years.
Built on a 4500 square metre site, its footprint (1000 sq.m under cover and 2000 sq.m of open-air courtyards and gardens) includes a central area divided into three sections − each for 20 children, complete with a spacious common area, sleeping area and creative workshop − alongside a large kitchen run by a professional cook, bathrooms and offices organised around a central atrium.
The interiors and exteriors of the building are enhanced by the use of ceramic tiles, testifying to the material’s extraordinary potential.
The outer walls, mainly closed to protect the children, are clad with brightly coloured tiles from Mirage’s Black & White and Free Style collections, chosen for their self-cleaning technology and their rectangular size which also makes them suitable for the solar screens.
But around the courtyards, light floods in and colour seems to vanish. The paving takes centre stage, consisting of lawn areas interspersed with elegant Beola Bianca tiles from Caesar’s Absolute collection.
Inside the building, light and colour coexist. Only small spots of colour punctuate the intentionally neutral yet warm floors of the central area, consisting of wood-imitation antibacterial Rovere Bianco tiles from Atlas Concorde’s Etic collection and elegant coffee-coloured Moka concrete effect tiles, likewise from Atlas Concorde. But colour reasserts itself on the walls of the three bathrooms, where orange (arancio-mandarino), green (verde-foresta), grey (grigio-cenere) and white (bianco) tiles from the Archicolors collection by Fap Ceramiche combine in a lively patchwork.
But what makes this new structure really unique is the excellence of all aspects of the project, from architectural design through to construction:
The internationally renowned excellence of the Concorde Group, which has its headquarters and five industrial facilities located nearby.
The excellence of the childcare service, giving the parents — employees of the Concorde Group — the peace of mind of knowing that their children are nearby and looked after by highly trained, caring people.
The excellence of the partnership between the private sector and the public administration to provide local families with a state-of-the-art facility.
The excellence of the Modena-based architecture practice Lugli, which amongst other things is renowned for its work in the field of school buildings and for its focus on environmental sustainability. Complete water recycling, ventilated facades and underfloor heating all contribute to energy savings.
The excellence of the materials chosen for the building, first and foremost ceramic tiles with their guaranteed aesthetics, hygiene, safety, variety of colours and designs, durability, technological performance and natural components.
The excellence of the management decisions made by a not-for-profit cooperative set up by Concorde group member companies and personnel, including selection of educators with degrees specialising in early age groups, timetables tailored to the needs of working parents (especially those working shifts) and a service that runs from the beginning of September to the end of July.
The nursery is named in the memory of Don Arrigo Mussini, a local priest who was much loved for his commitment to social issues and his work to support families.