Detailed Schedule

2014 CAE Spring Conference
The Value of Design: Enhancing Education Through Architecture
April 27 - 30, 2014, Barcelona, Spain


The Value of Design: Enhancing Education Through Architecture


This initial session will frame the dialog around the conference theme, “Enhancing Education Through Architecture.”  Architect doctor and professor at the School of Architecture of Barcelona, Josep Maria Montaner will provide an overview of the impact of Catalonian design traditions on educational facilities, and its impact on learning. He has authored some 35 books on architecture and won the National Award of Spain Urban Housing, Ministry to Journalistic Initiative in 2005, for his articles in the newspapers El País and La Vanguardia. Tours of the Barcelona Pavilion, designed by Mies Van Der Rohe, will follow.


Learning Objectives

  1. Learn about the rich history of educational facility design in the Catalonia region.
  2. Understand the value placed on architectural design in Catalonia and Spain.
  3. See how educational facility design in Catalonia has evolved over the last century.
  4. Tour the Barcelona Pavilion and learn about its restoration.





Central Barcelona: Educational Facility Study Tours and the Impact of Design on Catalonian Educational Environments

Participants will spend the day touring five educational facilities, each designed by a different architect. Tours will be a minimum of one hour each and will include a presentation from the architect or project manager on the planning and design process. Each tour location will have a different focus including sustainability, urban context and the important role of architectural design schools in regional culture. Head teachers or facility directors will comment on how well each building is performing and describe any challenges that have occurred since occupancy.  At the end of the day, participants will attend a symposium discussion on Innovation and Sustainability in Educational Architecture Design at the Col·legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya (Catalonia’s equivalent to the AIA). Panel members will include Wolfgang Frey from Freiburg, Germany and Nate Allen from the USGBC’s Green Schools Coalition.  Mr. Frey will expound on the application of PassivHaus strategies to educational facility design, while Mr. Allen will update us on the ever expanding role of LEED in shaping schools in more than 20 countries. A representative from the Education Department of the Catalan Government will present the local point of view.



  • Fort Pienc Primary School in Poble Nou, hosted by Felip Pich-Aguilera and Jorgi Paris, Architects.
  • Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia, hosted by Vicente Guallart, the Chief Architect of Barcelona City Council, who will describe the renovation of an old warehouse building into an architecture school.
  • Bau School of Design, hosted by Josep Boncompte, Architect.
  • Jaume Fuster Library, hosted by Josep Llinas, Architect or the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB).


Learning Objectives

  1. Learn about funding mechanisms for public, private and public/private partnerships with respect to educational facility design and construction funding in Catalonia.
  2. Learn about how the Spanish focus on sustainability and renewable energy has impacted the design of all types of educational environments.
  3. Understand the impact of an urban context with centuries of history on the design of new buildings.
  4. Hear about the differences between Spanish, northern European and the USGBC’s approaches to integrating energy efficient features into architecture.



Balancing the Territory: Educational Facility Tours and Panel Discussions outside of Barcelona


Participants will depart Barcelona and travel northeast to Manlleu and Girona, where they will tour the award-winning Els Color Kindergarten, a new Law Building at the University of Girona, IES Carles Rahola High School and CEIP Mas Masó Elementary School. Presentations and panel sessions will focus on Spanish governmental requirements for educational facility design balanced against the local community's influence on each project. Students in each facility will be invited to interact with the group during the tours. Alan Dunlop of Glasgow, Scotland will present his latest projects that address education and supported accommodation services to children and young people with additional support needs, including autism.



  • Els Color Kindergarten, hosted by Carme Pigem Barceló of RCR Architects.
  • University of Gerona Law School, hosted by Carme Pigem Barceló of RCR Architects.
  • Girona High School, hosted by Enric Massip of  Emba_Estudi Massip-Bosch Architects.
  • CEIP Mas Masó Elementary School, host to be confirmed.


Learning Objectives

  1. Learn about how design can enhance the lives of persons with unique needs.
  2. See how individual communities can influence the design of their schools.
  3. Hear about designing with sensory quality materials to benefit multiple sensory impaired students.
  4. Understand how Spanish and Catalonian educational facility standards are implemented in various settings.





Barcelona: Historical Educational Environments


Participants will begin the day at the Antonio Gaudi designed Sagrada Familia Schools. Originally designed as a convent, the building was converted to educational use and now serves the needs of students from Kindergarten to 12th grade. The lead designer of the conversion and restoration, Josep Gomez Serrano, will review the challenges of reusing and repurposing a historic building. Afterwards attendees will walk to the Sagrada Familia Church for a group tour and discussion about the building structure and the push to complete Gaudi’s vision. The conference will conclude with a discussion on the effects of space on pedagogy at the Sant Gregori School.



  • Sagrada Familia Schools, hosted by Josep Gomez Serrano
  • Sagrada Familia Church
  • Sant Gregori School, hosted by Coll-Leclerc Architect


Learning Objectives

  1. Understand the ongoing tension between the push to complete Gaudi’s vision of the Sagrada Familia and the now historic buildings that have arisen within its proposed footprint.
  2. See firsthand how an historic structure has been successfully adapted to serve educational purposes.
  3. Hear how one schools emphasis on preparing students for life in Catalonia, Spain, Europe, and the world shapes its pedagogy and facilities.
  4. Observe how a dynamic and vital educational institution has grown and adapted over time, constantly re-shaping buildings to suit its needs.