The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

Towering red beams shade walkways of Rajasthan School in India

Deep red walls and walkways shade the primary-coloured interiors of this school in Rajasthan, India, by Sanjay Puri Architects.

Set over three stories, the Rajasthan School has been equipped to deal with the desert climate.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

With temperatures hovering above 35 degrees Celsius for most of the year, shade and natural ventilation are a key part of Sanjay Puri Architects' design.

A large central courtyard crisscrossed by walkways is sheltered by the red frames of oversized pergolas, which cast areas of deep shade.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

The walls of the east, west and south sides of the school complex are angled to deflect the sun, sloping so they are wider at the base than at the top.

Every classroom is north facing, to benefit from indirect sunlight. Angled fins project either side of recessed areas of glazing.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

Primary school classrooms and a triple-height auditorium occupy the southern side of the complex, along with administration spaces.

Secondary school classrooms, a library and a cafeteria sit on the other side, across the shady courtyard.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

"Traversed by a series of linear trapezoidal frames and sun-breakers, this focal area has a constantly changing shadow pattern depending on the sun's direction throughout the day," said Sanjay Puri Architects.

"The layout is intentionally fragmented, allowing open landscaped spaces to be interspersed with the school's learning spaces."

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

Sanjay Puri Architects said they approached the school layout by looking at the urban design of an old Indian city, with narrow streets shaded by high walls.

Semi-open courtyards run the perimeter of the classrooms, and sports courts and a running track sit in the surrounding grounds.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

Inside, the walls are coloured the same vibrant red, with contrasting walls in blue and yellow.

These blocks of primary colours are punctuated by internal organic oval cut-outs or perforated facades, creating interesting visual connections across corridors and stairs and allowing air to flow through.

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects

To make it sustainable, the Rajasthan School is powered by residual energy produced by a nearby cement factory.

Sanjay Puri Architects was founded in Mumbai by Sanjay Puri in 1988. Bright, angular walls also featured in the practice's crescent-shaped design for an office building in Surat.

Photography is by Dinesh Mehta.


Project credits:

Principal architect: Sanjay Puri
Project architects: Ishveen Bhasin, Ankush Malde, Pooja Prajapati
Client: Shree Cement

More images and plans

The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
Ground floor plan
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
First floor plan
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
Second floor plan
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects
The Rajasthan School by Sanjay Puri Architects