The inauguration ceremony of Delta Sunshine Elementary School located in Yangjia Town, Mianyang City, Sichuan Province of southwest China, was held on April 22, 2011. Mr. Shi Dinghuan, Chairman of China Renewable Energy Society(CRES) and Consultant to the State Council, Wang Suqing, Chairman of China Exploration & Design Association, Zeng Wanming, Mayor of Mianyang City, Zhong Jishou, Director of China National Engineering Research Center for Human Settlements under China Architecture Design & Research Group (CAG), and Zheng Chonghua, Chairman of Delta Environmental & Educational Foundation, attended and addressed the inauguration ceremony.
Leaders at all levels spoke highly of the construction of Delta Sunshine Elementary School. “The course of three-year post-disaster reconstruction passes by very quickly, and now, most of post-disaster reconstruction and aid construction projects are completed. Delta Sunshine Elementary School in Yangjia Town attracts the most attention, adopts the largest number of the latest applied technologies for architectural design and features the most outstanding characteristics of energy saving and environmental protection among numerous schools rebuilt, though it is not the largest project completed at the earliest. Thanks to the construction of this school, we learn that building is an application carrier of solar energy and other clean energies, that to popularize solar energy building is one of effective shortcuts to build a low-carbon city, and that applying solar energy will play a very important role in building a environmentally-friendly society and creating a low-carbon living environment in China,” said Shi Dinghuan, Chairman of China Renewable Energy Society.
“Engineering exploration and design is an important carrier to implement Scientific Outlook on Development in the investment and operation, and it plays a leading role in improving investment returns, optimizing industrial layout, adjusting industrial structure, protecting ecological environment and developing circular economy. As an achievement of the architectural design competition, Delta Sunshine Elementary School in the Yangjia Town, Fucheng District of Mianyang City, is built on site with investments from enterprises devoted to environmental protection; and its design concepts and methods will be further summarized, disseminated and popularized,” said Wang Suqing, Chairman of China Exploration & Design Association.
In 2009, the “2009 Delta-cup International Solar Building Design Competition” was initiated. It was sponsored by the International Solar Energy Society (ISES) and China Renewable Energy Society(CRES), organized by the Special Committee of Solar Buildings of Chinese Renewable Energy Society, and named by Delta Environmental & Educational Foundation. The Organizing Committee of the Competition went to the earthquake-stricken areas for survey and exploration, formulated competition rules in accordance with the climatic features, damages and losses of the disaster areas, solicited design proposals for “Sunshine Elementary School” in the earthquake-stricken area from all over the world, and put forward an idea that “Sunshine Elementary School” should not only emphasize a green concept of environmental protection, but also focus on the integration of architectural technology and solar energy technology. Delta Environmental & Educational Foundation decided to invest 10 million yuan to apply the most outstanding award work into field construction for the first time. The 2009 Competition was themed “letting children always enjoy sunshine and bring sunshine to all corners during the growth of children”.
At 2009 Delta-cup International Solar Building Design Competition, the Organizing Committee received 194 valid entries submitted by competitors from China and overseas countries and the entry entitled “Sunrise in Sichuan” submitted by Shandong Jianzhu University won the first prize. “The entry considers local natural environment and climatic conditions, focuses on the integration and application of natural resources centering on solar energy and wind energy ranging from overall layout and architectural design and adopts a strategy of low price and low-carbon technology to localize solar energy technology and improve its applicability, in a bid to create a place where children enjoy sunshine and spread messages of love and hope,” the Organizing Committee highly praised this first-prize winner.
The design team is committed to design objectives of low-carbon campus, namely low costs for building, high comfort level, low operating costs and sustainable operation, to create a new campus space integrating modern educational ideas and advanced architectural technologies, in a bid to improve educational ideas and spread low-carbon concept via experience and education. Sunshine Elementary School demonstrates adaptable design and architectural technologies to create a safe, healthy, comfortable and energy-saving education space and provide a high-efficient and personalized teaching environment. The design team fully considers the climatic features and architectural culture in Mianyang as well as energy consumption for the operation of the school, integrates site conditions and various functions of different buildings, and reasonably optimizes layout and architectural space to realize an organic integration of architecture and natural environment. In addition, the design team also makes the utmost of solar energy and other renewable energies and fully considers the climatic feature of sultry summer and wet winner in Mianyang based on the terrain conditions of the school site to realize a passive design strategy focusing on ventilation, heat insulation, sunshade and moist insulation in summer and on heat concentration, heat preservation and wind shield in winter.
Guided by the design concept giving priority to passive design and focusing on harmony between architecture and natural environment, platforms and semi-basements are designed to maximally reduce the volume of earthwork on school site and keep the direction of surface water runoff on the original site and surroundings.
The original terrain and physiognomy of the site are utilized to create multiple greening landscapes. To the south of the school site, the renovations and protection to the original farmlands and water channels are utilized to create an experience region of ecological wetland environment and experimental fields reflecting a unique rural school. Upon the post-disaster construction, Sunshine Elementary School becomes a learning site for students, and more importantly, it also serves a spiritual home highlighting the harmonious coexistence between explicit material culture and implicit cultural spirits. The Sunshine Elementary School completed gathers the attention from global architects and also provides interesting experience of green life to both teachers and students. For instance, the solar heat water system on the kitchen roof makes the low-cost boiled water available to teachers and students at any time. The constructed wetlands collect rainwater while providing ponds where students can play together. As to the influence on people, the most significant difference in the new school building from that in the previous buildings is that, the school strengthens the friendly interactions between users and environment, cultivates an awareness of energy consumption among students and helps them develop a life idea of environmental protection and energy saving as well as a sustainable lifestyle. It promotes common progresses of campus construction and rural education, realizes the harmonious coexistence between “educational development” and “environmental protection”, and enables this land and the descendants on the land to permanently benefit from the new green school characterized by its sustainable development.
On June 1, 2009, the construction of Sunshine Elementary School was commenced in Yangjia Town, Fucheng District, Mianyang City, Sichuan Province. The design proposal of the school was based on the first-prize winning work at 2009 Delta-cup International Solar Building Design Competition and adjusted by China National Engineering Research Center for Human Settlements under CAG in accordance with actual conditions of post-disaster construction of Delta Sunshine Elementary School.