Open school
Jul 9, 2013

For a new elementary school in Regensburg, Twoo-Architekten from Cologne opted for an unusual spatial concept and a stringent selection of materials. The elongated building gives a welcoming, open impression – just how compact it really is only becomes apparent on closer inspection. The reason: A stacked spatial principle was adopted for the new building. The lower story accommodates two sports halls, which also take up almost half the ground floor. The classrooms are positioned against the outer walls and on the upper story. All of them have large windows and face either the schoolyard or the various inner courtyards.

The concept of upper-story classrooms references the pavilion structure of 1950s Reformschulen, progressive schools where students always had direct access to outdoor areas. The “classroom pavilions” at the elementary school in Regensburg are oriented towards four rooftop terraces, which also have garden elements, small flowerbeds for the 400 students on the school’s roof. And in summer classes may even be held outside – with a total terrace area of 1,200 square meters there is certainly no shortage of space.

For the developer, the City of Regensburg, an efficient, sustainable energy concept was important. Thus the windows are triple glazed and the building can boast photovoltaics, heat insulation and solar thermal energy. And naturally no tropical wood was used for the terraces, but a wood composite material. MyDeck uses wood flour, which accumulates in saw mills, fused with polyethylene and pressed into panels. As such the terraces are weatherproof and low maintenance. And, a not unimportant point at an elementary school, they do not splinter.

The MyDeck panels are weatherproof, do not gray and do not require sanding. Photo: © MyDeck
The MyDeck panels are weatherproof, do not gray and do not require sanding. Photo: © MyDeck
Floor-to-ceiling windows ensure pleasant lighting in the interior. Photo: © MyDeck
Teachers, students and workshop leaders have cast concrete seating stones together, which form an attractive contrast to the MyDeck panels. Photo: © MyDeck
Skylights and small flowerbeds on the roof were made using MyDeck panels. Photo: © MyDeck
The terraces or inner courtyards can also be reached from the main corridor. Note the handrails at different heights. Photo: © MyDeck
The elongated building is welcoming and relatively compact. Photo: © Stadt Regensburg, Peter Ferstl
The seating surrounds the skylights for the ground-floor rooms. Photo: © MyDeck
The parasols also remind you of the holidays. Photo: © Stadt Regensburg, Peter Ferstl
School is in session! Yet the elementary school’s terraces are more reminiscent of a vacation resort. Photo: © Stadt Regensburg, Peter Ferstl