The quality of school buildings: a national emergency, a research field
The progressive worsening of the Italian school stock – in terms of comfort, environmental quality, energy efficiency and functional equipment – is widely documented in several surveys, that indicate severe levels of inadequacy, particularly acute in the regions of Southern Italy. Over the last thirty years, the need to operate an obsolete stock has absorbed a large share of investment in school buildings, which is in drastic decline. Some legislative measures recently adopted aim to correct this situation, with investments in both the renovation of the large stock already in service, and the construction of new schools. In addition to replacing the share of inadequate buildings, the increase in the rate of renewal may allow to fully experience up-to-date design approaches and solutions, oriented not only to satisfy updated functional standards, but also to provide modern educational methods to adequate learning spaces. Called to deal with the social changes, the evolution of educational needs, the organizational and technological innovation, the unconventional scheme of funding, the design of new schools can become reference that also inspires the refurbishment of the existing building stock.
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