Inspired by its unique location on Haderslev harbourfront the new education centre has been designed as an atrium building, with a 360° view of the town and the harbour. The education centre's terraces are a key element in its expression. In a movement, which starts right down at ground level and ends up on the building's top floor, the terraces twine around the house, uniting indoors and outdoors in a single gesture.
But the education centre is not only about making a distinctive mark on Haderslev's waterfront. It also provides the setting for a future-oriented, flexible and digital educational environment by combining expertise with modern information technology and innovative teaching methods. So the education centre has no permanent classrooms. Instead, it has been designed as an open, digital educational environment, united by the atrium and the staggered staircase at the heart of the building.
To create a manageable educational environment the floors have been divided into subject areas. The first floor is dedicated to science subjects, the second floor to cultural subjects and the third floor to modern languages. Thus the education centre challenges the traditional notion of a school built up on the basis of permanent classrooms, in favour of a more flexible model in relation both to distribution of space and the flow of the students. VUC Syd's GODS principles have resulted in an unconventional and far more vibrant educational environment, in which group areas, presentation spaces, dialogue cubicles and quiet zones allow for more diverse approaches to education.
Modern IT has been given high priority in the design and layout of this education centre. For example, every student is issued with his/her own iPad or MacBook, while a total of 165 digital screens have been integrated as a natural component of the educational environment. Contact to the town and the waterfront has also been given high priority. This finds expression in the public ground floor, which encompasses the public space into the education center and includes a culture café and lecture theatre, which provides space for larger-scale and group events.
“Multi-dimensional and visually impressive, the project provides an updated model for the perfect integration of the learning environment and the public space.”Dutton Hauhart / The international architecture magazine A10