Schools at the lake

Single-row silver willow avenues along the paths, accompanied by linear reed plantings, provide a design reference to the shores of Lake Constance. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

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At the entrances to the school, robust wooden seating and reclining platforms form identity-creating meeting points. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

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The "Heroes' Trail", a circular route, leads through various adventure spaces. At these path stations, targeted use and learning focal points are created as DYI (do-it-yourself) outdoors. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

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Ground floor plan with school park, forecourts and the three themed courtyards stone-wood-water © 2015 TERRA.NOVA

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"Hof 1-Gestein" deals with the glacial morphological genesis of the region. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

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Huge rock monoliths, ground round by glacial moraines, randomly distributed in the courtyard space, invite you to climb and explore. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

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"Hof 2-Holz" stands for the region's abundance of wood and its connection to Lake Constance shipping. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

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"All hands on deck!" Large, height-graded wooden platforms provide space for play and togetherness. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

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"Hof 3-Wasser" thematizes the so-called "Sandribbeln" (sand dribbles) as a recreated, topographical landscape made of large-format, amorphously shaped prefabricated concrete elements. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

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In the water courtyard, large pools of water that can be flooded by the children themselves invite them to cool off in the hot summer months. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

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Single-row silver willow avenues along the paths, accompanied by linear reed plantings, provide a design reference to the shores of Lake Constance. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

At the entrances to the school, robust wooden seating and reclining platforms form identity-creating meeting points. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

The "Heroes' Trail", a circular route, leads through various adventure spaces. At these path stations, targeted use and learning focal points are created as DYI (do-it-yourself) outdoors. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

Ground floor plan with school park, forecourts and the three themed courtyards stone-wood-water © 2015 TERRA.NOVA

"Hof 1-Gestein" deals with the glacial morphological genesis of the region. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

Huge rock monoliths, ground round by glacial moraines, randomly distributed in the courtyard space, invite you to climb and explore. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

"Hof 2-Holz" stands for the region's abundance of wood and its connection to Lake Constance shipping. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

"All hands on deck!" Large, height-graded wooden platforms provide space for play and togetherness. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

"Hof 3-Wasser" thematizes the so-called "Sandribbeln" (sand dribbles) as a recreated, topographical landscape made of large-format, amorphously shaped prefabricated concrete elements. © 2019 Storz TERRA.NOVA

In the water courtyard, large pools of water that can be flooded by the children themselves invite them to cool off in the hot summer months. © 2019 Boris Storz TERRA.NOVA

The special location in direct proximity to Lake Constance determines the joint concept of building and open space. All school uses are closely linked to the outdoor space via open courtyards and platforms on the upper floors. To the northeast, the school and inner courtyards are oriented towards the school and sports park in front, with a direct view of the lake. To the southwest are the common access and recreation areas of the existing sports halls and the new school building, a cluster of elementary school, middle school and triple sports hall. In order to strengthen the readability of the described spatial allocations, the exterior space is divided into three thematic areas:

1. The spine
An open front area combines the bus stop, school path, access roads and building entrance zones into a generous entrance. This is characterized by a formal, functional design. As a result, materials and planting are designed in a uniform and comprehensible manner. There is a conscious decision not to differentiate between the surfaces of the various types of use. Traffic and access routes for pupils remain separated by a clear functional allocation. Starting from the "backbone", a crossroads leads across the school park to the centre of Hard and directly from the school to the lake. This guarantees a safe route to school from outside. Silver willow avenues along the paths emphasize the close interlocking with the surroundings. Accompanied by reed plantings, the design reference to the shore of Lake Constance is taken up. At the school entrances, robust wooden seating and sunbathing platforms form identity-creating meeting points. Various sports facilities support the multifunctional usability and are also popular during breaks.

2. the school park
In the landscape area adjacent to the northeast of the school grounds, the focus of the design is on the natural experience. The so-called "hero's path", a circular course of mown lawn paths leads through various experience spaces. At the path stations, targeted outdoor use and learning focal points are offered, such as school theatre, green classrooms or an art garden. The special places are marked by selective densification of the woody structures into grove-like situations and at the same time sufficiently shaded. Initially, only the basic spatial framework will be created by planting trees and creating a two-tiered meadow area. The school park is deliberately designed to be resilient in order to accommodate further demands for use. Together with the teachers and the students, the use of the places will be developed in the sense of the school's DYI mentality and gradually completed. For example, the so-called "Ackerdemie" is currently an extension of the school garden for growing vegetables in their own efforts.

3. The three courtyards
The design of the courtyards arises from the history of the region. Geomorphological and landscape features of the site are described for each courtyard. In the spirit of "polarization," a central concept of the Montessori pedagogy used in the lakeside schools that denotes a focus on one element, each of the three courtyards follows a particular theme:
"Courtyard 1-Rock" deals with the glacial morphological genesis of the region. Through glacial moraines, round-ground, giant rock monoliths, as they actually exist in the subsurface, are randomly distributed throughout the courtyard space, inviting exploration. "Hof 2-Holz" stands for the region's abundance of wood and its connection to shipping on Lake Constance. Under the motto "All hands on deck!", height-graded wooden platforms provide ample space for play and togetherness. The theme of "Hof 3-Wasser" is the so-called "Sandribbeln" (sand dribbles), a topographical landscape made of large, amorphously shaped prefabricated concrete elements. This is a nearby natural monument of modelled sandstone formations in the course of the Bregenzer Ach river. Similar to nature, large pools of water in the Wasserhof, which can be flooded by the children, invite them to cool off in the hot summer months.


Award Sport, Game, MovementGerman Landscape Architecture Award 2021

Jury verdict:
The award-winning project of the "Schools by the Lake" manages to interpret the theme of the "educational landscape" in an open-space planning way in a particularly successful way. The landscape architectural design uses appropriate means to exploit the potential of the privileged location on the shores of Lake Constance. The architecture of the school fits harmoniously into a clearly structured, landscaped and playfully designed open space, which can react flexibly to the future development and further occupation of the school.

The varied interior and exterior spaces are interwoven in a variety of ways, and in many places there are reciprocal visual relationships from the school buildings to the attractive landscape area of Lake Constance. The spatial and typological differentiation into a generous entrance, attractive playgrounds, the near-natural school park as well as the numerous sports facilities has been implemented with great clarity. The fact that the students learn across grades and subjects is reflected in the open, non-restrictive or determinative play offerings of the playgrounds and the school park.

The playgrounds "Water, Wood and Stone" in particular are also convincing in detail due to their landscape associations and the multifunctional offerings with high design and play value. The landscape architects have succeeded in creating a timeless place of learning with an exceptionally friendly, warm and at the same time natural atmosphere.

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Planning offices
TERRA.NOVA Landschaftsarchitektur

Employees
Philip Schmoeger, Bettina Sedlaczek

Other planning stakeholders
Architektur: Baumschlager Hutter ZT GmbH, Dornbirn

Client
Marktgemeinde Hard
Marktstrasse 18, A-6971 Hard (AT)

Address

Hard (AT)

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Prices & Awards
German Landscape Architecture Award 2021
Award Sport, Game, Movement