Groenendaal Primary School Park Classrooms / HUB

Groenendaal Primary School Park Classrooms / HUB

© David Jacobs © David Jacobs © David Jacobs © David Jacobs + 22

Antwerpen, Belgium
  • Architects Authors of this architecture project HUB
  • Area Area of this architecture project
  • Project Year Brands with products used in this architecture project
  • Photographer Created with Sketch.
  • Lead Architects

    Bart Biermans & Koen Drossaert
  • Design Team

  • Clients

    KOBA vzw
  • Engineering

    Thys Bouwprojecten
  • Collaborators

    Util, Esta
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© David Jacobs
© David Jacobs

Text description provided by the architects. After successfully renovating a historic castle into a secondary school for the Groenendaal College, the client asked HUB to design additional classrooms for the primary school pupils. The site is located within a sheltered part of the castle grounds, near the pond. We designed a light-footed pavilion that carefully positions itself within this delicate context, while simultaneously making maximum use of its location in order to create an exceptional learning environment.

© David Jacobs
© David Jacobs

The final location of the new classrooms was determined after a meticulous tree inventory. We opted for a compact floor plan in order to reduce the ecological footprint as much as possible. Together, the four classrooms form a pavilion with a tilting roofline that contrasts pleasingly with the trees in the park.

© David Jacobs
© David Jacobs

The Park Classrooms have high sustainability credentials: we designed them with a view to minimising energy consumption and used circular construction techniques. The main structure consists of CLT (Cross Laminated Timber) and we selected all other finishing materials in function of environmental friendliness and ease of dismantling for maintenance or replacement. In this respect, Groenendaal College can serve as an example for future school buildings.


The Park Classrooms are intended for children aged between 6 to 7 years old, who are often slightly uncomfortable within a large school environment. We have taken this into account. The spatial concept is characterised by a centrally located collective space, naturally lit by a festive skylight, in which the children are welcomed but where cross-classroom work can also take place. This is akin to a shared living room. The four classrooms that surround this space all have double external doors that give access to a covered outdoor area in the park. In this way, the children can also work or play outside, in the immediate vicinity of the familiar classroom environment.

© David Jacobs
© David Jacobs

In terms of materials, the interior is in keeping with the ‘Scandinavian School’. By following this tradition, we consciously avoided a provocative use of materials and colours and instead opted for natural components, used them in recognisable ways, and prioritised their tactile qualities. These principles have contributed greatly to the appropriation of the school by the children, and to a sense general well-being within the learning environment.

© David Jacobs
© David Jacobs

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Project location

Address: Gagelveldenstraat 71, 2170 Merksem, Belgium

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Groenendaal Primary School Park Classrooms / HUB" 27 Sep 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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