Sustainable Learning Centre in Minnesota: Bagley Outdoor Classroom 1

Supporting the idea of outdoor learning, David Salmela designed the Bagley Outdoor Classroom, a LEED Platinum building at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, a wonderful sustainable learning centre. The new sustainable learning center was built on an old, unused volleyball court, encompassed by a maze of trees. Although the area has a nice setting for running, hiking and exploring, the university never made the most of it. The construction itself occupies a small area, accommodating only the indoor open classroom. The outdoor classroom, envisioned as a patio, supports courses in biology, physical education and recreation, environmental studies, engineering, and many more.

Sustainable Learning Centre in Minnesota: Bagley Outdoor Classroom 2

“The outdoor classroom is created by the paved area defined by the fireplace, wood storage and reclaimed wood benches. The indoor classroom is a rhythm of exposed recycled timber structure punctuated by large openings to the South that create the connection between the outdoor class-room and indoor space.”  Boasting large openings and exposed timber beams, the interior brings more of the exterior inside. The idea was from the very beginning to establish a connection between the two types of classrooms.

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