Special Education School in Bern
The new building for the Special Education School in Bern blends in with the scale of the existing building and ties into the flowing external space of the school campus in Bümpliz. The new building, composed of two fragments, is horizontally orientated and carefully positioned as an extension of the existing campus, which is made up of several building elements. The northern building section – an open volume – contains the sports hall, multipurpose space and eating area as well as the kitchen for the facility. The southern section contains all the classrooms.
With this two-part structure beside the Statthalterstrasse and Morgenstrasse junction the school campus is completed with a ‘head building’; the structure will bring character to the site as well as a new access point on the eastern side.
The new school is clearly structured. All the pedagogical facilities are located on two storeys, which emphasises the concept of a day school responding to individuals’ requirements. The school is composed of two building fragments, which result from the respective uses: one open and one more intimate fragment. The new covered main entrances and the central staircase are arranged where the two sections meet. Here the volume of each is accentuated with a cut through. The two entrances are oriented towards the east and to the west. They clearly divide the vehicular space from the children’s exterior space. The infrastructural access to the new school building is, accordingly, located to the east. Pupils are dropped off and collected with a transport service and other means. Parking spaces are located here and deliveries to the kitchen also take place. The east entrance is busy at the beginning and end of the school day.
During the school day, in contrast, circulation is concentrated on the western entrance in the direction of the school yard. This entrance is aligned with the existing mainstream school and the rest of the associated outside space.
The materials and architectural language of the existing campus provide an inspiring basis for further development; the new building with its prefabricated wooden façade is a continuation of elements from the existing site. The campus contains concrete, brick and plaster buildings as well as the Gfeller Stöckli building with its typical rounded wooden roof.
- Lukas Raeber, Gonçalo Duarte Pita
- Landscape: MOFA, Zürich
- Structural Engineer: WMM Ingenieure, Basel
- Site: Bümpliz-Oberbottigen, Bern
- Client: Hochbauamt Stadt Bern
- Type of use: School
- Floor area: 4`851 m2
- Volume: 17`586 m3
- Construction cost: 25.2 Mio CHF