Primary School Het Landje by Korteknie Stuhlmacher Architecten
Primary school Het Landje in the centre of Rotterdam was urgently in need of additional space. Following an extensive search for an appropriate location for an extension, it was decided that the former building of the Hildernisseschool at the Schiedamse Vest just opposite the main building of the school should be refurbished. The existing building with its comparatively generous dimensions offered more space and possibilities than any new building would have been able to.
The Hildernisseschool has been built in 1968 as an extension to the older, adjacent school building, designed by municipal engineers. The architectural language of the existing building avoided all references to its function as a building for children; however, its rational, concrete structure consisting of concrete columns, beams and floors makes it well suitable for transformation.
After the refurbishment the outer and inner appearance of the building has changed radically. The skin of the building was insulated and plastered, integrating an additional volume on the roof. All windows have been replaced and the roof was insulated and covered with vegetation.
The unrelenting rational pattern of the existing facade has been covered by an informal composition of different colours and textures. This composition softens the rigid rhythm of the openings and enhances the sculptural character of the volume as a whole.
The applied colours refer to the immediate surroundings of the school. The approach to regard colours as variations of the colour white is derived from a watercolour by August Macke, ‘das weiße Haus’. The artist paints a white house in the sun by using intensive colours. The colours illustrate the artist’s perception of the white. The new skin gives the building a contemporary, fresh appearance, in keeping with the ambition of the school to be ‘art-minded and colourful’.
Of the existing interior only columns, staircases and the gym have been kept. On the upper floors all existing separating walls and all false ceilings have been removed. The concrete structure was revealed where possible. Decorative timber panels have been added locally to improve the acoustic properties of the space.
The new interior provides the building with more flexibility and fresh colours. In addition to the conventional classrooms the school now contains more informal spaces for individual tasks and for work in smaller groups. The ground floor serves as a multifunctional hall with a lowered floor connecting directly to the newly furnished outdoor space. Generous glass walls and a wide canopy enhance the connection between the interior of the school, its playground and the surrounding city.
|Architects||Korteknie Stuhlmacher Architecten|
|Location||Rotterdam, The Netherlands|