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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Stelzhamer school Linz in Austria by kirsch ZT GmbH

 
April 1st, 2016 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: kirsch ZT GmbH

The objective was the redevelopment and extension of an existing school – a building made from prefabricated concrete slabs in the 1970s – in the centre of Linz. The building’s extension closed a gap of surrounding perimeter block development while at the same time creating an independent ensemble. Easy access to public transport and the location within a dynamically developing urban area justify the expansion of the school site.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

  • Architects: kirsch ZT GmbH
  • Project: Stelzhamer school Linz
  • Location: Linz, Austria
  • Photography: Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

The complex includes a Neue Mittelschule with 12 classes and six group rooms, a four-class primary school, a branch of the PTA, a gym and a multi-purpose hall.

50% of the building’s existing structure was preserved and expanded to create space for new classrooms, the gym and the multi-purpose hall. The primary school was reisulated.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Architectural concept

‘Space as the third teacher’ (L. Malaguzzi)

The aim of the architectural concept was to make the environment palpable also inside the building by maximising openness. Unobstructed views allow easy orientation within the school.

The central, open development offers atmospheric zones for recreation and relaxation.
Glass walls in the group rooms on the east side of the building open up the view into the leafy courtyard. The overall ensemble (redevelopment and extension) is convincing down to the details and offers the children worlds for learning and movement.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

The outside glazing on two levels allows the rooms optimal exposure to light. The individual classrooms were designed with built-in storage offering plenty of space and ‘hidden’ displacement ventilation on the walls alongside the aisles.

The colour design of the gym and multi-purpose hall differentiates the rooms according to their uses: large pixel graphics (basketball, breakdance, hockey, ballet) on the walls not only serve as an optical enrichment, but also encourage movement. The position at the crossroads of Figuly- and Tegetthoffstraße is essential from an urbanistic perspective and is marked by the design of symmetrically offset roof lights.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

The cladding panels were engraved with excerpts from Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (right to education) in six languages, hence also using words – a central medium of education – to convey the designated use of the building to the outside.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Open space

A central feature is the high-quality design of the spatially limited outdoor areas designed to create a sophisticated, robust and enjoyable open space despite a high usage rate (400 pupils). Thus the areas for communication and movement, which are essential in an inner-city location, are offered in the courtyard as a supplement to the gyms.

In addition, the green area in front of the building along the street was not designed as a buffer, but as a meeting place for pupils and local people (small squares, benches, plants).

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Technical implementation

The object was implemented in a low energy construction method with controlled ventilation (displacement ventilation in the classrooms) including the design for a natural secondary ventilation system. The façade consists of prefabricated wooden elements with an HLK ventilated covering layer of fibre cement slabs.

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © Hertha Hurnaus

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

Image Courtesy © kirsch ZT GmbH

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Category: School

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