This timber-clad nursery nestled in a forested suburb of Hamburg, Germany comprises classrooms arranged around a central glazed atrium with a small garden. Kraus Schoenberg Architects separated the building into a cluster of compact units that offer views of other rooms through large openings, in order to create a sense of connectedness between the children.
Enveloped in rough-sawn larch boards, the volumes create a connection to the surrounding nature. The central atrium is surrounded by corridors that create the cloister functioning as the main public and play area. Inspired by the small scale of neighboring residences, the architects decided to segment the volume and convert it into smaller interconnected volumes.
In order to create a more open feel and introduce more natural light into the spaces, the design team punctured the volumes on the interior side and used large openings which also provide views in several directions.
“Big square openings allow views from one children’s room to another via the external atriums,” said Schoenberg. “We were trying to achieve a sense of connection with the other children, a bit like on a street with pedestrians on opposite sides of a road.”
Photography is by Hagen Stier