The Best-Designed School Ever?
Students at Ergolding Secondary School in Germany are surrounded by architectural beauty.
Their new school uses colour-coding to help students find their way — and the assembly hall is an open atrium in the centre of the school with a view onto the schoolyard, naturalized surroundings and a pond.
Designed by Behnisch Architekten and Architekturbüro Leinhäupl+Neuber, the school has north-oriented windows to optimize natural lighting. It has airy, open classrooms that include partitions to create smaller spaces. Its learning spaces extend beyond classrooms into informal communal meeting spots for teachers and students.
Most of the building’s heat comes from a ground source heat-pump under the playground. Light reaches darker areas of the school via ‘light-directing solutions’ while LED lighting cuts down about 70 per cent energy use, compared to traditional lightning systems.
In classrooms, smaller work spaces can be created by a partition wall. On the third floor, teacher work spaces are located in between science labs and classrooms.
Getting school envy?
You can read more about the Ergolding school here — and you can relieve some of that school envy by checking out how Toronto’s own Artscape remade the old Shaw Street School, a heritage-designated building declared surplus by the school board in 2000.