- Architects In Charge: Leon Thier, Frans Benjamins
- Team: Martijn Wilms, Romano van den Dool, Floor Thier
- Management: PM2 / Arcadis
- City: Eindhoven
- Country: The Netherlands
Text description provided by the architects. The Augustinianum is known in Eindhoven as a ‘school for smart students’. The ambition of the school is to not just distinguish themselves through thorough education, but also through incorporating sports, drama and pop music in their programme. A school that shows what it stands for and adds substance to its Originally, the Augustinianum was a traditional grammar school run by Augustinian clerics. The existing buildings from the 1950s no longer met the demands of present times, which is why the decision was made to realize compact new buildings on the former sports grounds located alongside the existing buildings.
The central design idea for these new buildings was the Agora. The Agora, literally ‘gathering place’, was a meeting point and a trade location in many cities in ancient Greece. In the Augustinianum, the Agora serves as a symbol for encounters, located in the heart of the school. Around this area, the ‘expertise areas’, aimed at linguistic science, exact science and social science are each located on different floors.
By placing the classrooms and staff rooms around the perimeter of the building, a flexible zone with several functions is established around the Agora. The Agora floor climbs towards the first floor by means of terraces, which creates a special learning and recess landscape that can also be used as a public gallery during performances and presentations. The stage at the end of this gallery is extended to the exterior area. The only division between these areas is a large theater window with a view on the green space outside. In this window, we gave re-established the gorgeous stained glass window depicting St. Augustine from the old school building.
Above the stage, one can find the central Media Library, a beautiful high study room. On the outside, the Media Library, along with the outside stage, creates a characteristic image aimed at the street. The Agora and the stage are a beloved recess area. When the weather allows it, the green spaces around the school also provide plenty of recess opportunities.
Under the rising gallery of the Agora, the ‘underground’ can be found at ground level. This space consists of rooms for drama, music, arts and cultural activities.
At the top of the gallery stairs, the gymnasiums can be found. In these rooms, large windows provide a view over the sports grounds. The raised gymnasiums are supported by A-shaped columns, which is an echo of the characteristic concrete elements on the roof of the old school building. The bicycle storage is situated underneath the gymnasiums. The façades of the building have been made from a multi-colored, yellow-ish stone, with a plinth made of prefabricated concrete elements. The ‘A’ of
Augustinianum is also represented in these façades. The windows of the classrooms have been placed in long window frames. The staircases are raised above the volume on the exterior, which makes the top of them the ideal location for the many installations, as they can remain hidden from view this way.
The design is a co-production of architecten|en|en & Studio Leon Thier. This assignment was very personal for Leon Thier, as he is a former student of the “The architects have made this design with their heads, their guts and their hearts, creating a design that fits the atmosphere and touches you deeply.” Maarten de Veth, principal
Product Description. As an reference to the former school building from the fifties, the facades of the new Augustinianum are made of yellow variegated brickwork with contrasting elements of prefabricated concrete.