The location on Winkerlaan falls within a striking urban-architectural-landscape context. On the west side there is the rigid strip division between the Lamerislaan and the Winklerlaan, while the school itself lies in a green strip between the housing and the railway line. This green strip ends on the south side in a public sports field and on the north side in a (horse) meadow towards an ecological garden park. We want to continue the green character of this zone. We do this by creating sight lines, by dividing the total volume of buildings into two components and also by providing the future schoolyard with greenery. This has laid the foundation for the new school building. The building lies as a natural gesture in the otherwise continuous, green space.
The main design consists of two building parts linked by an intermediate component. One component for the educational program, the other for the gyms. Both volumes have shifted in relation to each other in order to achieve a configuration that, on the one hand, provides answers to the desired use of the school with the outdoor space and, on the other, fits in with the immediate context. This choice follows in a natural way the position of the component of the education program on the north side of the lot.
In the intermediary is the main entrance, the play room and the meeting room. Through this space you also reach the group rooms. These are clustered per four and are located on the outer facade for daylight purposes and work together as a cluster of learning areas. Here pupils can work independently or in small groups under the supervision of the teachers. The learning squares are adjacent to a patio, the heart of the building. The patio literally forms a resting point in the building. Here you can isolate yourself from the rest as a pupil or teacher. The first floor has the same layout as the ground floor and is used by the middle and upper grades. In order to prevent extra stimuli and distraction, the group rooms of the specific clusters are adjacent to their own outdoor space. On the ground floor, the group rooms for the substructure and OZA even border on their own garden which is closed off by greenery from the rest of the square. The layout of the square is green and invites changing use and discovery.
In the green space in which the school stands, we would like to place an unambiguous volume, robust in materialisation, soft in shape and light in color. The two components (education and gym) are programmatically connected by the entrance and the play room. In order to prevent that the three parts will fall apart, a solution was sought to connect the various components together. By dividing the masonry of the façade into ‘tapes’, one band is continued at the level of the first floor as an awning that also connects to the other volume. The bricks are laid in the façade strips as a roll layer, creating a subtle nuance of the volume. The rounded corners soften the building and connect the various outdoor spaces in a smooth manner. The gyms are positioned further back of the changing rooms on the square. The façade of the gymnasiums (above the ground floor) is executed in a steel façade cladding in a color aligning the outside frames.
Interior design: NEST
engineer installations: J. van Toorenburg BV
structural engineer: Alferink van Schieveen
landscape design: Buro Beuk
art: Superuse Studios
building physics: Peutz
visuals: Paolo Faleschini