Chances Academy

  • Chances Academy is an art and therapy center for school-aged children with special needs. Art and nature programs are developed as a mode of therapy, rehabilitation and integration into modern society. 

    A synergy of design principles from sustainability, biophilic and universal designs promote balance for people (users & visitors), planet (flora & fauna, school & urban grounds) and profit (business, management, operations).
  • The roof garden safely houses sensorial spaces for play, gardening, dining, overlooking ongoing below activities and self reflection. It also permits operational plans for stormwater management and heat island effect.
  • Eastern Longitudinal Section
  • Western Longitudinal Section
  • The adjacent lot of 111 Point Street is developed as an enclosed parking lot for children to be safely dropped off and picked up from, also revealing a secret garden to play in and use as community garden for students to sell their crops to the Providence community. 
  • Controlled Views: The entrance of the school offers a direct view & path to the South mediation garden and above garden and play area. The ceilings of the waiting & exhibition area, library and auditorium are carefully designed to let natural light in and connect the viewer to nature. 
  • The receptionists have 360 degree overview to the outside parking lot, outside playground, waiting & exhibition area, auditorium, classroom & dining halls. 
  • An open layout transforms the dining hall, the large stairs and the mezzanine above into the perfect place to enjoy entertainment and recitals from students. The auditorium also plays the role of indoor play area on a rainy day and hosts a large under-stair storage. At all times, students and visitors are enveloped by the natural realm of the sky and beautiful botanical species planted above and in surrounding gardens, forgetting the dense urban environment.

  • A large open kitchen for staff to prepare meals and also children to tag along during cooking class and festivities. Perforated walls allow constant supervision onto the entrance doors, waiting area, library, auditorium, dinning & classroom halls.  
  • Green walls and screens add visual and sound privacy from the busy classrooms. The green walls is a good opportunity for student to grow indoor plants and herbs. A variety a seating and dining arrangements give flexibility to both students and visitors.
  • Each classroom has a unique visual and sensorial identity so that students easily recognize their location & assignments. A multi-functional, sensory based design with custom furniture (touch, sound, light, color) is key to accommodate students with a variety of needs and skills. 
  • The entire West wall of the school reveals sets of small windows that filter sun rays adapting to students sensitivity to light. Each classroom hosts dimming light for faculty to adjust accordingly. 
  • Personal space is also vital for a successful day at school. Each classroom holds a special place for students in need for soothing and alone time, safely with or without the help of an aid.  
  • Each classroom serves a specific program with custom furniture promoting social interaction & sharing as well as individual development.
  • A large meditation room also serving as a place for physical therapy & exercise, time-out & reflection, along with two smaller ones, have direct views onto the South meditation garden while bathing in the Western warm filtered sun rays.
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  • Controlled view: Walls, floors and fence are raised so that children and adults' view range is redirected and solely connected with the interior of the school, nature on the roof garden, surrounding trees and the sky, completely avoiding the asphalt and concrete roughness of the dense urban surrounds.
  • Controlled view: A moment of solitude with nature allowing students to feel guarded by the trees behind them, the wooden canopy on top and the direct overlook into the indoor garden.
  • A community garden is introduced within the adjacent parking lot to mediate stormwater runoff and the loss of flora and fauna diversity in the dense urban setting.
  • A secret garden within the adjacent community garden adds layers of fun for adults and children while helping the return of native flora and fauna diversity.