Nordøst Amager School

  • Architect

    Kjaer & Richter - a part of Vilhelm Lauritzen Architects

  • Client

    Copenhagen Municipality

  • Collaborators

    NCC, Christensen og co. architects, Lyngkilde engineers, 1:1 landscape

  • Location

    Holmbladsgade 117, 2300 København S

  • Area

    11,500 m2

  • Status

    Completed in 2023

  • Award

    Nominated for the annual building award in Copenhagen municipality (2024)

  • Competition

    1st Prize

New school in a dense city

The project is designed by Kjaer & Richter - a part of Vilhelm Lauritzen Architects. 

In the midst of the densely populated area of Northeast Amager - stretched between Holmbladsgade and Prags Boulevard - lies NØA with the schoolyard elevated high above the busy streets. The school houses a range of public functions that support the vision of the school as the local neighborhood center and a common focal point for both learning and recreational activities.

NØA is a brand-new 3-track public school with sports hall and after-school facilities located adjacent to Kløvermarken on Amager. The school has a distinct character as a solitary, monochrome, brick-red building that fits both in scale and expression into the colorful streetscape that characterizes the Holmbladsgade neighborhood. With its open and transparent ground-floor entrance and recreational area, NØA invites the local community inside for social events or sports activities. Common areas and subject environments are dual-coded to accommodate multiple functions and are used by both the school, leisure, and cultural activities. The school is organized into two primary zones, the 'leisure zone' with sports, auditorium, upper secondary education, and workshops on the lower levels, and departmental areas for primary and middle school on the upper levels.

The school is arranged around a central atrium that serves as an informal meeting place, gathering staircase, and space divider on the individual floors. The atrium is the main thoroughfare of the school, marking a continuous zone of high activity and movement where children and adults meet across ages and disciplines. Primary education is organized on two floors in close connection with the after-school program and with direct access to the rooftop terrace. The middle school occupies the top floor, where the atrium opens up towards the sky with a large gathering staircase. The upper secondary school has ample opportunity to use the leisure zone as a natural extension of their learning environment, and conversely, the upper secondary school creates an attractive and more intimate environment for evening classes, courses, etc. The school's outdoor areas and public spaces are located on several levels with optimal solar orientation and minimal shading from the surrounding buildings. Large trees and green roof surfaces ensure lush and shady outdoor areas and give the building its very own "green" profile. The elevated outdoor areas minimize the impact of traffic noise from cars and simultaneously enhance the quality of the school's outdoor spaces, where especially subject environments and younger children have access to airy and safe outdoor recreation and learning spaces.

Sustainability In the project, there has been a focus on a vision for the school to create a project where students and users learn FROM the building - and not just in it. This has been achieved by working purposefully and systematically with sustainability from the early sketches to the planning of the construction process and the finished building. Our vision for sustainability consists of sustainable learning, healthy indoor climate, resource-efficient building, responsible construction, and strengthening of the local community.

Excerpt from the jury's deliberation:

"The project demonstrates excellently that the leisure environment welcomes the leisure users and creates ownership of the place, among other things through the large cohesive Leisure zone with great visual openness as well as the seating staircase, which creates coherence between the outdoor area towards Holmbladsgade.”

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