Copenhagen Gallery

Bülowsvej School

Located diagonally opposite the Garden of the Royal Danish Veterinarian and Agricultural High School is Bülowsvej School. In contrast to most urban schools, its buildings are linked by a vast, green, courtyard area, which is an integral part of the school’s architecture and everyday life. With the new annexe this green space will become even more assimilated into the architecture of the school

Bülowsvej School has constantly kept pace with the times and modern demands for a school's physical surroundings. In 1989 the School merged with the neighbouring Thorvaldsen School, and in 2009 a major modernisation project began. This entailed the demolition of Thorvaldsen School and the construction of a new, modern, five-storey school building. This will now provide premises for elementary classes and the after-school centre, and will incorporate the green area even more than before.

Peepholes between classrooms

CEBRA and the landscape architectural practice LIW Planning have been responsible for the School's modernisation project.

Each of the 35 classrooms in the new, modern five-storey building is linked to its neighbours, either via doors, or via windows of all shapes and sizes, ranging from tiny peepholes to openings as big as the actual wall.

On the ground floor there is a large "multi-room", visible from Thorvaldsensvej, which can be used for any of the diverse kinds of activity the school needs to organise.

Façade in interaction with the block

In contrast to the previous building, the new building extends right out into the forecourt on Thorvaldsensvej, thus extending the road's block layout. The choice of material for the brick façade facing the road also creates a harmony between the school and the old, elaborate apartment buildings on Thorvaldsensvej.  However, the "random" placing of large square windows of various sizes break up the façade, providing light for the classrooms and lending the school a highly individual appearance, which sets it apart from the neighbouring apartment buildings.

Every storey has a spacious balcony with a view of the school's courtyard.

Teaching in the courtyard space

Each of the School's buildings is located at its own end of the courtyard space: both to extend the courtyard space and to incorporate it on equal footing with the indoor spaces. So the outdoor space can be used (e.g.) for the teaching of Natural Science, when the rainwater ponds will turn the yard into an "outdoor laboratory".

There are also plans to bisect the yard with an "experience path" with cherry trees and various stations for both playing and learning.

Friday, November 23, 2012 / By Julie Nørgård Christensen

Last updated Tuesday, January 21, 2014