The KaTO Experience: Transforming a Village in the Dominican Republic (Watch)

Early this summer, Syska’s Kasey Lankes and Danielle Ford teamed with Kyle Murphy, Executive Director of KaTO Architecture, and 12 US-based college students to help design a new kindergarten-to-primary school in Villa Caoba, La Romana in the Dominican Republic.

Check out these videos of Kasey and Danielle’s trip:

Villa Caoba’s private, non-profit school squeezes 300 students, aged 3-13, into just four classrooms.

With KaTO, Syska committed to helping the school achieve its vision and double in size. The new school will support 600 students with nine additional classrooms, new administrative spaces and bathrooms, and an eating area and library.

Once completed, the expanded school will also serve as a community epicenter, supporting adult vocational learning programs among other things. For the families of Villa Caoba, this is a transformative project. Kasey and Danielle, along with the rest of the KaTO team, met with Villa Caoba parents, students and faculty to learn about their vision for their school and conduct the initial on-site evaluations. Once back in the US, our team will deliver a carefully researched basis of design document—which identifies available materials, transportation methods and construction processes—to ensure the school’s design is contextual and realistic. This design will progress from schematic and development phases into construction documents, with groundbreaking taking place in 2018.