KID is a kindergarten situated in Lebanon, designed and built by NOTAN OFFICE (Brussels) in association with OONNONNO (Lausanne).
Squeezed between dense housing and an orange grove, the building is a long retaining wall hosting three floors for children and administration.
The upper floor stays low enough avoiding light obstruction to the private terraces of the neighboring apartments and its roof offers them a local stony landscape.
Between grey and green, built and open, concrete and natural, upper and lower level, the project is a transition from one state to another. With this in-between situation, connecting the natural with the built environment, the double orientation of the upper floor enhances the tension between those two contexts.
Inside, the project is articulated by spatial contractions. The concrete retaining wall swells to host all mono functional programs like stairs, storage and toilets keeping the open spaces as free as possible. All floors are structured in three spaces transiting through narrow darker spaces into wide and bright open spaces. In plan, the dislocation of those three open spaces offers an open view towards the sea.
Also, long and low windows respond to a child scale and orient the perspective towards the main garden on the lowest level.
With a similar outline, each floor have their own direct relation to an outside garden, giving a different identity to each floor with a different luminosity.
Outside, all centennial orange trees are preserved and serve a pedagogical purpose for the kindergarten.