school house allschwil

Location: Allschwil, Switzerland
Year: 2012
Program: primary school-competition
Team: Gus Wüstemann, Eftychia Papathanasiou, Jan Kubasiewicz, Nuno Almeida Arquitecto Paisajista, Gartenmann Engineering AG, Born Partner AG

School House Allschwil

Urban Situation
The main building volume is positioned on the north-west corner of the terrain, generating and defining clearly the maximum surface of the school park towards the South. The school is clearly recognizable as an urban mass within the urban context and offers a new conciseness to the area.
On both limits to the two streets the ´head´ of the mass is formed as an animal-like figure, a rabbit to the South and a fish to the North.
Sensors stretch out from the main mass, which communicate with the neighboring block in a local context. These sensors generate large covered exterior spaces and become the entrance accesses from both streets.
The access from Binningerstrasse is along the sports hall, which as a glass mass under the sensor mass gets pushed into the forest, while from Lettenweg we have the access under an open structure, which works as a filter to the park and a bicycle parking area.

School building
The school building is situated on the North-South axis and has its main facades on the East-West.
On the ground floor are all the accesses. On the periphery is the program, which is also intended for the neighborhood, such as the sports hall, the music hall and the day school.
The access from both sides of the block happens under large drafty covered exterior spaces at the level +1.00 and leads to the entrance in the center of the school building.
The peripheral closing of the school is interpreted as part of the exterior space, a continuation of the playing level. These surfaces are covered with wood, which is used also on surfaces in the playing equipment and the exterior areas.
All program such as the sports hall, the music hall and the day school have their own entrances and can be separately used, but at the same time are also accessible from the interior space.

The school building is surrounded from the North-West side by a forest, a vast vegetation, which leads till Binningerstrasse and filters the entrance. On the South-East the entire school park is divided in fine structured surfaces; opposite the sports hall is the basketball field, in front of the classrooms are the break time areas with seating units and surrounded seasonally by different colored trees. The entire school park is at the level +0.00=Lettenweg, and is surrounded by the peripheral closing at level +1.00, which can be interpreted as a tribune to the park.

The school building is planned in a compact way. The exterior envelope is a concrete construction with suspended, in core insulated, prefabricated concrete elements. These elements alternate with glass panels with exterior sun protection. In the interior there is exposed concrete, and the circulation areas covered with wood, giving a sustainable, material-focused atmosphere.