Kids daycare “Maštodrom”

Authors: Milena Zindović, Aleksandra Savović

Construction: 2022.

The specific program of a kids daycare, intended for children of various age groups, was the main input for the project. Considering „Maštodrom“ is housed in a rented space, it was necessary to keep all interventions as light as possible, tobe able to easily revert the space into its previous condition, if needed. That is why all basic architectural elements of the rented commercial space have been kept, but with a needed adjustment to the requirements of a children’s daycare. The project also includes the design of furnishing and equipment elements that are both functional and flexible, as well as fun and inspiring for the kids that will be using the space.

Since „Maštodrom“ is located in Belgrade downtown, in one of the new urban housing complexes, Novi Dorćol, the main inspiration for the interior design was the city itself, and houses and building and various architectural shapes were used as a motif to create interior elements.

The space if programmatically divided into several ambiances, while some are phisicaly divided as well. The entry, of course, is dedicated to children’s registration and putting away outerwear, with its reception desk, a sofa and small coat racks designed as row houses. The reception desk and coat racks were designed custom for this space by MZ Studio.

After registration, the children access the spacious main area of the daycare. The floor surface changes from the “cold” ceramic tiles to the warm laminate flooring in wood texture. Within the open space several ambiances are housed – reading area, playing area, area for educational videos, workshop area. A learning area is also created, partially isolated with a 2m high drywall.

The auxiliary functions are located in the back of the elongated commercial space – toilets, kitchenette with meal area, and an office space for individual consultations and administrative work. Natural light in the office is allowed by placing a large fixed window in upper part of the dividing drywall.

Strong colors were used in the interior design, coresponding to the visual identity of the „Maštodrom“ brand.

The main space, with its 67m2 of surface area, is completely free of furnishings and equipment in the middle, so that it can be used flexibly and changed depending of the activites provided to the children in „Maštodrom“. All interior elements are located on the rims of the space – on the walls.

Along the long left wall of the main space, silhouettes of “houses” in different colors are ligned, each with a different function. The yellow slanted roof houses the day care’s library, while the reading nook is created underneath the window with low seating. The large embossed white house is dedicated to the development of motor skills with games on the wall. Underneath the blue vaulted ceiling toys are stored, and the orange niche with hidden lighting creates a seating bench. The large wood-textured house-shaped shelf is home to pillows and stools that can be flexibly used for seating anywhere in the space.

On the right-hand side, a large cork board with a yellow frame decorates the wall – an exhibition space for the children’s drawings and activities. Alongside the wall bought toy storage is located, in colors accepted for the visual branding of the space. One the wall that divides the learning area for the main area, a skyline-shaped blackboard is created – another flexible element that changes constantly, depending on kid’s activities and creativity.

At the back of the main space, designated with a dark blue house, a large TV allows for screenings of educational videos from the comfort of the lazybags freely thrown in front. Lazybags, pillows and stools allow for the flexibilty of the space and various configurations of seating, adjusted to the various activities happening within the daycare.

Next to the screenings area, a specialy designed craft table is located. This large table on wheels is designed to allow children to gather around it, sitting on stools that fit perfectly in the lower shelves underneath. The table’s outside shelving is intended primarely to house craft materials, but can also be used for the stools. The tabletop has elevated edges to prevent possible spillage of some of the liquid workshop materials. Next to the table, in the crafts area, is also a graphic wallpaper for children to color, as well as more storage space for craft materials.

The semi-enclosed space of the „classroom“ is intended for homework, learining, or group activities that might require partial isolation. This space is not completely separated from the main daycare area, since it has no door, and the drywall doesn’t reach the ceiling height. It is equiped with children’s desks and chairs, and a blackboard on the wall.

The kitchenette was made using store-bought elements and the meal area equipped with children’s and regular furniture. The office has wall-long storage for documentation and various materials needed for the functioning and maintenance of the daycare. It also houses a desk and chairs, to allow for administrative work or private consultations. These spaces are equipped simply and functionally.

The main daycare area is additionally distinguished with hand painted murals on the walls next to the reception desk and window. In brand colors, continuing the motif of houses and towns, with added natural elements, they were designed and realized by the artist Ognjan Dževrnja from BašBrush

Photos: Miloš Martinović

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