MoDus Architects delivers community and style with Tartan School’s expansion in Terlano, Italy


Though not Alsatian, many of the towns in Italy follow ‘Beauty and the Beast’s’ beginning principle: Little town, quiet village. Beautiful Terlano in the north of Italy has made schooling a bit more fun with MoDus Architects. MoDus has revamped the already existing Tartan School by adding an extended wing. Its design greatly accommodates the growing population of the provincial town while keeping a harmonic ecosystem.

Tartan follows a similar design outline that many European towns have modeled their school’s after since the 1990s. Tartan’s U-shaped structure allows for an open center accessible to the rest of the campus, as well as great views of the town from far away. Tartan finds itself near a cozy nature wonderland with surrounding mountains, vineyards, and a large landscape for anyone to enjoy.

The Tartan School interior go for a simplistic yet affectionate and exciting environment. Akin to modern wooden toys recently popularized, Tartan’s design is quite emblematic of the same. The school sticks to mostly neutral primary colors as well as gray, allowing a pop of color for creativity but serious tones for cohesive learning. Organizational cubby’s are key for any school, MoDus’s seamless design integrates these closets to be an integral foundation of the classrooms compared to add-ons.

032 MoDusArchitects Tartan School ©Marco Cappelletti
Dining Hall and Kitchen (Marco Cappelletti)

Tartan’s school has been divided into three central spaces. The Nursery school for ages 0-3 will be on the upper ground floor. The new expanded wing of the Tartan School will house the kindergarten for ages 3-6. The Youth Center will continuously be on the ground floor for accessibility and a way to meld the age ranges together for community building. The ground floor is also home to the dining hall, an auditorium, and an overall meeting area.

The school gets its name from its amicable two-tone green facade replicating a tartan fabric pattern. MoDus’s revamp is warm and inviting, but still keeps an exciting whimsical theme with its new wing adjacent to the original plan. MoDus’s emphasis on learning brings an importance to architecture when it comes to education. With its opening in September of 2023, MoDus and the Tartan School is a prime example of creating a balanced area for children to develop in.

06 MoDusArchitects Tartan School ©Marco Cappelletti
Exterior view, Kindergarten entrance, New building. (Marco Cappelletti)

The Tartan School is not the first time MoDus has devoted their time to creating learning centers for children. MoDus has helped with over 20 other educational spaces while allowing for innovative advancements. Tartan has had their insulation, windows, and roof improved so both buildings would have the same energy performance, leading Tartan to be a certified “Climate House A.”





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