The new building in northern Madrid replaces its predecessor building in the city centre. With its special educational program and evening theatre performances and concerts, the German School Madrid is an important site for cultural exchange.
In this large complex, the school’s diverse areas of use are legible as clearly defined units. The individual buildings – the kindergarten, the primary school and the secondary school – each frame an inner courtyard. All patios open up to the surrounding landscape and a vista of the snow-covered mountains.
Reflecting both the requirements of the architectural brief and the topography of the site, the buildings develop differentiated spatial situations, yet all components unite into an organic ensemble with strong sculptural presence. The common areas – the “foyer courtyards”, the cafeteria, a concert hall/ auditorium with 750 seats and the sports hall – connect the individual school buildings.
All children meet in the foyer courtyards before dispersing in their individual school buildings. Here the sculptural strength of the polygonal skylights creates a captivating play of light, providing the pupils with valuable shade.
School buildings play a key role in conveying both building culture and sustainability. A return to traditional simplicity, while demonstrating innovative technological sophistication influences the design approach, it’s construction and building services. The implementation of ancient wisdom, such as natural cooling through a subterranean thermal maze, will ensure the building’s sustainable operation.
A school is more than a matrix of classrooms; it is the centre of the students’ living environment and shape their understanding of both the built and natural worlds as well as their sociocultural experience. The spatial compositions and visual connections within the school promote a sense of group identification and intercultural exchange in order to carry on the tradition and success of the German School.
Grüntuch Ernst Architects Armand Grüntuch, Prof. Almut Grüntuch-Ernst
Project Directors Erik Behrends, Florian Fels, Olaf Menk, Arno Löbbecke, Jens Schoppe
Project Team Benjamin Bühs, Ana Acosta Lebsanft, Irene Arranz Astasio, Rafael Ayuso Siart, Cristina Baixauli Garcia, Mar Ballesteros, Tina Balzereit, Anna Berger, Johannes Blechschmidt, Matthias Cremer, Benjamin Figueroa Henseler, Jost von Fritschen, María García Méndez, Joana García Puyuelo, Isabell Gruchot, Julia Naomi Henning, Kristina Herresthal, Götz Hinrichsen, Mónica Hinrichsen, Laura Jeschke, Rebeca Juárez, Johannes Klose, Markus Lassan, Itziar León Soriano, Danko Linder, Sarah Manz, Elena Martínez del Pozo, Vera Martinez, Annika Müller, Andreas Nemetz, María Isabel Ortega Acero, Ana Pascual Posada, Jaime Promewongse, Dominik Queck, Lisa Schäfer, Karsten Schuch, Borja Solórzano, Kerstin Thomsen, Pablo Claudio Wegmann, Henning Wiethaus, Víctor Wolff Casado, Anna Wolska
Technical Planners GTB-Berlin Gesellschaft für Technik am Bau mbH, Berlin (structural engineering) Prof. Dr. sc. Mike Schlaich, Berlin (checking enineer for structural analysis) Ingenieurbüro für Haustechnik KEM GmbH, Berlin (building services) Transsolar Energietechnik GmbH, Stuttgart (energy technology) Prof. Dr. Klaus Daniels / HL-Technik, Munich (energy concept competition) Müller-BBM GmbH, Berlin (building services) hhpberlin, Berlin (fire protection) Úrculo Ingenieros, Madrid (fire protection / building services) Lützow 7 Garten- und Landschaftsarchitekten, Berlin (open space planning) Lichtvision, Berlin (lightning design) GuD Consult GmbH, Berlin (geotechnical engineering) Carsten Nicolai, Berlin (art) Folke Hanfeld, Berlin (art)