NYC – WeGrow reimagines education with new school designed by BIG

BIG wegrow school New York interior-00

Originating from the collaboration between WeWork and BIG-Bjarke Ingels Studio, the first WeGrow school was recently opened in Manhattan.

cover image: WeGrow school, image by Dave Burk

The 10,000-square-foot learning universe for children aged three to nine is located in WeWork’s HQ in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. The school environment is designed to embed the values of a new conscious approach to education.
WeGrow is designed for learning to be a holistic experience. A field of super-elliptic objects with a variety of functions allow children to move freely throughout the day and to learn from the environment around them and each other. The learning landscape encourages collaboration by emphasizing transparent and communal spaces, which comprise more than half of the school: four classrooms, flexible workshops, community space, a multi-purpose studio, art studio, music room, and other playscapes support the energy of creation and togetherness.



 WeGrow school, images by Dave Burk

Most of the partitions inside the school are shelves raised to the level of the child, allowing natural light to reach deep inside the building. Three different shelving levels for each age group curve occasionally to create various activity pockets and give a feeling of comfort, safety and community, while allowing teachers to have a full perspective of the space at all times.
Above, acoustic clouds made of felt reflect the different patterns in nature – fingerprint, coral, landscape, and moon – and illuminate with Ketra bulbs that shift in color and intensity based on the time of day.

Each learning station within WeGrow includes furniture with details and materials carefully designed by BIG to optimize the educational environment: modular classrooms promote movement and collaboration, puzzle tables and chairs manufactured by Bednark Studio come in kid and parent sizes to offer equal perspectives, and the vertical garden with tiles made in Switzerland by Laufen are pockets to lavender, sweet violets, chocolate mint, and others depending on shade exposure.


WeGrow school, image by Dave Burk


COLLABORATORS: WeWork, Environetics Group Inc., Cosentini Associates, William Vitacco Associates Ltd., Digifabshop, Bednark Studio, LAUFEN, Ketra, Febrik
SIZE: 10,000ft2 / 930m2
Partners-in-Charge: Bjarke Ingels, Daniel Sundlin, Beat Schenk
Project Leader: Otilia Pupezeanu
Project Architect: Jeremy Babel
Team: Bart Ramakers, Douglass Alligood, Erik Berg Kreider, Evan Saarinen, Fabian Lorenz, Filip Milovanovic, Florencia Kratsman, Francesca Portesine, Il Hwan Kim, Jakob Lange, Ji Young Yoon, Kristoffer Negendahl, Josiah Poland, Megan Ng, Mengzhu Jiang, Ryan Yang, Stephen Kwok, Terrence Chew, Tore Banke, Tracy Sodder



 WeGrow school, images by Laurian Ghinitoiu.

Images courtesy of BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group

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