Home » About » Architecture of Maktab

Architecture of Maktab

Maktab was planned to be harmonious with nature. Indoor spaces were seamlessly merged into outdoor spaces.  Many non-traditional areas were designed to allow for interesting and non-standard learning opportunities. Separate regions were designed for formal sports, for social interaction and for meditation or introspection. 

A Modern Twist on an Ancient Tradition

Geometry has played a deep and important role in Islamic architecture. Maktab, in keeping with its original vision of technical excellence, continues to build on this tradition. It is probably the only place in Pakistan that incorporates mathematical structures in its architecture.  The two notable mentions are:

Peano Space-Filling Curve

The geometric tradition is given an original and interesting twist in the lattice screen used throughout Maktab.  The lattice screen used throughout the building takes its inspiration from Peano’s Space-Filling Curve (discovered in 1890 by the Italian mathematician Giuseppe Peano).  Mathematicians at that time were grappling with the problem of infinities that had been of interest to mathematicians since the time of ancient Greeks. Peano was trying to solve the problem of whether there is a continuous map from the unit interval (all numbers between 0 and 1) to the unit square (a square of side 1). Peano gave the answer in the affirmative. This curve is constructed iteratively. The lattice screen at Maktab is inspired by the third iteration.

Penrose Tiling

Tessellations in Islamic art have been known for their beauty, harmony, and intricacy. These surface patterns have been found on domes, plates, walls, incense burners, manuscript pages, and pillars. Honouring this tradition, the floor in front of the School Office was tiled with Penrose Tiles. These are named after the famous Oxford mathematician Roger Penrose, who discovered these minimal aperiodic tiling patterns in the 1970s. The amazing fact about aperiodic tiling is that the pattern is not translationally invariant.