A new primary and comprehensive school (IUS) is planned for the former site of the Helios AG in Cologne Ehrenfeld. The school concept is based on the idea of a "university school", which spatially implements the educational objectives of inclusiveness: The school comprises the grades 1 to 13 and operates closely with the teacher training of the University of Cologne. This is architecturally reflected in an open learning environment for all grades. As part of a new high-quality and dense city block, the school should be an integral part and actor of the district: The school premises may be used publicly and the school offers a range of activities to the neighborhood.
The school is designed as a compact structure, which is confidently positioned due to its clear-cut cubic form and at the same time contextualized by its orientation to axes and edges of the surroundings. It creates a clear address to the Vogelsanger Straße by a glass-enclosed foyer and a funnel-shaped, covered entrance situation. The inviting foyer and the localization of semi-public functions on the ground floor – such as the auditorium and educational center, the canteen, workshop and studio spaces – creates the desired integration of the school into the district and allows for important synergies of different usages.
The common center - "the heart of the school" - spans over two floors and offers spacious stairs for meeting and seating: A great place for communication and leisure for all functional areas of the whole school.
Excerpt from the jury report: "The jury praised in particular the optimal implementation of the educational objectives, which corresponds in a particular way to the intentions of the users. The learning environments are well designed and can be effectively used. Primary education is accessible as a separate unit on the first floor over short distances. The secondary education units I and II are localized on one level and are equipped with a spacious central communication zone, which provides space for a diverse range of activities. ..."