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Jersey Shore University Medical Center
The Jane H. Booker Learning Center
Brick, New Jersey

The childcare facility is designed with kids in mind, being highly graphic and designed with child-scaled spaces and equipment. But first and foremost, it is designed to teach children how to become future stewards of the environment.

The Jane H. Booker Learning Center is a building at the forefront of sustainable design and construction practices. Targeted for LEED Silver certification, the building combines low-tech principals of passive solar design with innovative modular building techniques, emerging technologies and sustainable materials, resulting in an ultra-efficient structure with a small carbon fooprint – a green machine for learning.

The building’s architecture is, itself, a teaching tool that imparts valuable lessons about sustainability. It’s siting, massing and materials are designed to take advantage of the local microclimate – harnessing the sun for passive heating, the prevailing winds for ventilation and north light for learning spaces. Its compact form reduces its impact on the site and thus on the planet. The interior spaces are awash in natural light and enlivened with rich color palette that also serves as a way-finding system, helping the children to locate their classrooms. The building’s public spaces, the lobby and multipurpose room, are further animated with life-size wall murals that recall popular amusement park rides of the nearby Jersey Shore, tying the building to the larger campus. Surrounding the building is a series of outdoor spaces containing a boardwalk, sandbox and lawns that accomodate structured and non-structured activities.

Photos by Sam Oberter Photography