The high-calibre Grand Jury chaired by Elizabeth Diller (DS+R) has chosen Children Village, designed by Aleph Zero and Rosenbaum, for this year's RIBA International Prize. The building concerned is located at the edge of the rain forest in northern Brazil and provides accommodation for 504 pupils at Canuanã School aged between 13 and 18. Many of them come from distant and remote areas, with some travelling several hours by boat to get to the school.
Three open courts form the basic structure of Children Village. The dormitories are placed at the centre of the ground floor, while common rooms for learning and playing are located on the upper floor. The shade-providing roof consists of cross-laminated timber beams and pillars. The resulting overhanging structure creates an intermediate space, a sort of veranda that despite the tropical climatic conditions requires no cooling.
The Children Village was built entirely out of local construction materials and is one of forty school projects run by the Bradesco Foundation, which is committed to providing better educational opportunities in rural areas of Brazil.