Germany | 2011
The city of Osnabrueck is both surrounded by and contained within a large forest. This distinct relationship of the city within the natural landscape and the landscape within the city, was a predominant architectural design element for the new Comprehensive School in Osnabrueck. In response to the symbiotic relationship of nature and urbanism, we propose a building form of rotating exterior learning landscapes that are programmatically educational and conversational. The rotation of the terraces allow for each grade to have its own outdoor learning spaces. On the street level of the school, the central axis of the building has been left void of programmatic disruption. The residual space remains untouched.
By choosing not to line classroom corridors, with lockers which greatly reduce the amount of natural light into interior spaces, we propose learning lounges of lockers and integrated seating that are programmatically clustered based upon user needs. Clusters allow for user groups between the capacity of 4-10 students to gather for either study or recreation.
The roof of the building is a reactionary design scheme whose form derives from size limitations of the building ventilation system. In order for full coverage of the vent units, we designed a method of enclosing the units with the minimum amount of excess attic space possible. The roof form was a study of push and pull points of a line, ebb and flowing where ever the roof units were located. For practical sustainability measures, all southern facing roof slopes were cladded with photovoltaics while the northern facing surfaces had shrubby plantings. The final surface area of PV’s, together with the building’s high performance façade and operable louvers, mean the building will use less energy than comparable schools.