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Practicality meets whimsy at the Indoor Playground — which doubles as a lecture hall — of the Yueyang County No. 3 Middle School. The building’s sawtooth roof evokes the peaks and valleys of the Hunan mountains, and if you look closely at the brick patterns on the podium, you’ll see the constellations of the Zodiac. The 980-square-metre facility, made of aluminum and prefabricated steel, rests on a curvy red-brick base atop its stepped courtyard, which evens out the site’s sloped terrain. The interiors are awash in natural light that streams in from overheard windows, each outfitted with louvres to reduce solar gain during the hottest months of the year.

Project Indoor Playground (Doubling as Lecture Hall) Location Yueyang, China Firms SUP Atelier (China) with THAD (China) Team Yehao Song and Xiaojuan Chen with Dan Xie, Jingfen Sun, Surtoo Bai, Yingnan Chu, Dongchen Han and Haowei Yu Photos Zhi Xia

People’s Choice: Buildings Under 1,000SqM
Indoor Playground (Doubling as Lecture Hall)

Explore more Award Winners

2014
Award of MeritBuildings Under 1,000SqM
Location
Dichen Valley, China
Firm
Li Xiaodong Atelier, China
Team
Li Xiaodong with Martijn de Geus, Jerry Hau, Renske van Dam and Ying Xin
2014
Award of MeritBuildings Under 1,000SqM
Location
Lawrence, Kansas
Studio
Studio 804, University of Kansas
2019
WinnerBuildings Under 1,000SqM
Location
Qinhuangdao, China
Firm
OPEN Architecture, Beijing, China