Leigh & Orange
9-13 Kennedy Road
The St. Francis’ Canossian School is one of the few aided comprehensive secondary schools in Hong Kong. It has a long history dating back to 1869 when the Canossian Sisters from Italy established the school and became one of the first Grant Schools in Hong Kong. It was closed during the Japanese Occupation from 1941 to 1945 but re-commenced after the end of World War II. By this time, the school was operating on an old, winding building. Due to its poor infrastructure condition and the increasing demand across Hong Kong for sufficient accommodation for educating children, St. Francis also followed suit in efforts to modernize and extend its facilities.
The redevelopment incorporated modern elements with an emphasis on straight, vertical lines and a consideration to provide sufficient natural light and ventilation throughout the structures. The construction happened in two phases (the first in 1956 and second in 1958), which was necessary in order to allow current students to continue their studies at the old building while the new building was under construction. Following the completion of the new building, all classes would be moved to the new building to demolish the old building for the redevelopment of additional facilities. The planners initially faced difficulties with the site due to its steepness and geometric irregularity. However, by meticulously blueprinting the project, select levels of the school that are at a higher elevation now partially retain its original landscape. In addition to the renovation, the newly constructed building hosts arts and science facilities, music rooms, and a playground.