Façade planning for a new school building in Sursee

After ascertaining a need for a new high school building, the Swiss city of Sursee launched an architectural design competition in 2019. The contract was awarded to the Zurich-based firm BUR Architekten based on a design entitled «Manege Frei», which is a reference to the building’s Zirkusplatz (Circus Square) site. EBP was commissioned to help the architectural firm complete the planning work for the building’s façade.

Working together with the architects, EBP developed a metal window-frame concept for the façade and advised the construction engineers when it came to the façade’s concrete elements. In designing the façade, the architects aimed to emphasize the spatial relationship between the two main parts of the building, which include a classroom wing and a gymnasium that are joined to one another at the upper level. The upper and lower levels of the classroom wing are clearly demarcated by the façade’s self-supporting concrete structure. The gymnasium distinguishes itself in terms of its more slender, two-story light-metal window frames offering upper level fall protection, as well as an automated skylight that is also an integral part of the building’s ventilation system. The gymnasium’s concrete supporting posts are set in a distinctive, tighter rhythm, while the more open-grid structure of the classroom wing effectively links the students and their activities to the world around them.

BeimThe appearance of the predominantly glass entrance front for the classroom wing is enhanced by a curved façade that accommodates the spiral staircase on the inside.

Characterized by high window frames made of fully insulated light-metal profiles and an array of skylights, the upper level of the classroom wing lends a bright atmosphere to the learning space. The structure of the saw-tooth roof includes metal window frames.

Picture Credits: © Filippo Bolognese Images

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