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  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • Kirchwerder School
  • LOCATION: KIRCHWERDER, HAMBURG, GER
  • CLIENT: SBH | SCHULBAU HAMBURG
  • SIZE: 10.300 m² SCHOOL AND 1.850 M² SPORTS HALL
  • YEAR: 2016 – 2017
  • STATUS: COMPETITION PROPOSAL, 4TH PRIZE
  • ARCHITECTS: CEBRA, TRAPEZ ARCHITEKTUR

Our proposal for a new school for 1.100 students near Hamburg is located in one of Germany’s oldest preserved cultural landscapes, the Vier- und Marschlande. The peculiar and distinctive character of these marshlands is shaped by the linear geometries of the extensive network of drainage ditches and the sequence of villages along the dikes. The concept assimilates and reinterprets these defining elements in a contemporary school architecture that is rooted in the local building tradition and creates a diverse learning environment in close interaction with the spectacular surrounding landscape.

The new school building consists of six volumes, which are arranged along an inner “school street” that connects the different functional areas. The street is the school’s central common area and is laid out as diverse multi-functional space with an artistic-cultural focus. Inspired by the typical organization of the local villages the different functions, such as library, assembly hall, exhibition areas, canteen and special classrooms, are oriented towards the street to achieve a creative and including learning environment, which promotes activities across functions and age groups. The class rooms for each age group are located in “learning houses” and are connected to the central street by open staircases, which creates a gradual transition between the individual classes’ own private spaces and the open common facilities.

The six building volumes are offset from each other so that they interlace with the surrounding landscape and open the overall building for visual connections across the volumes and towards the landscape. At the same time, the offset organization creates protected outdoor spaces and connects interior and exterior functions to make outdoor activities an integrate part of the daily life at the school. In addition, special emphasis is put on the design of the roof as both distinctive architectural and functional element. The traditional pitched roof of the region’s large historic farmhouses is extended beyond the building volumes in a modern reinterpretation to form a series of slanted eaves. The roof design reduces the scale of the building to create a harmonic relationship with the surrounding village on the one hand and to form a secure environment of smaller, easily recognizable units on the other. The eaves also create a transitional zone of roofed terraces, which expand the classrooms and promote outdoor learning activities independent of the weather.