NL architects: school in knokke heist
NL architects: school in knokke heist NL architects: school in knokke heist
apr 27, 2011

NL architects: school in knokke heist

‘school in knokk-heist’ by NL architects in belgiumall images courtesy NL architects

amsterdam-based practice NL architects has sent us images of their competition-winning design of ‘school in knokke-heist’, an academic and multifunctional hall in the northern municipality of belgium. characterized by four branching arms, the project pinwheels off a central ‘heart’ which will serve an active role in the daily life of the school, resulting in a intuitive and efficient circulation scheme.

green roof

featuring a green roof, the single-storey facility benefits from a maximized surface area of glazing which facilitates abundant natural lighting and views towards the nearby farmland. apertures that pucker up from the roof further allows sunlight to penetrate through to the interior surface. the exterior crevices which are generated from the branching arms are utilized as parks, gardens and an open plaza. a flexible parking/drop-off zone seeps into the school’s ground to efficiently use the plot’s area.

aerial view

acting as a multifunctional hall, the center of the building hosts a gymnasium which can serve as a meeting place, a theatre, and a public place for ceremonies and festivals. the heart is wrapped by a corridor which acts as an internal arcade that distributes the circulation around the building. featuring a thick wall for building in dressing rooms and storage space, this space also contains amoeba-shaped cavities which provides a number of private nooks for studying and playing.


view of the outdoor court

garden space

drop-off zone

courtyard space

looking into a classroom

the classrooms are conceived as flexible spaces and lack a fixed arrangement. the window sills are extended to provide informal seating opportunities for a more interactive environment for learning.

amoeba-shaped nooks

view into the gymnasium from corridor


assembly space


extended window sill serving as working surface

view out from the nursery room

aerial shot

roof plan

site plan

floor plan

section a-a

section b-b

section c-c

  magic arrow diagram

(top row from left to right) primary school, heart, nursery school (bottom row from left to right) theater/restaurant, evening use, administration

sports hall elevations

versatile parking and outdoor court

project info:

client: gemeente knokke-heist architects: pieter bannenberg, walter van dijk, kamiel klaasse project leader: sarah moller design team: michael schoner and gen yamamoto with shuichiro mitomo, justine lemesre, jasper selen, christian asbo, luca kaptein roodnat (cover drawing) structural engineer: ABT antwerpen- ABT belgie climate and energy consultant: CENERGIE cvba cost consultant: bremen bouwadviseurs bv

  • looks great, but if they want to build an inclusif school, they’d better get rid of the cobble stones, they are very wheelchair unfriendly

    BieL says:

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