Primary School Vitznau

The school building with the village square, constructed in 1967, is located in the centre of Vitznau. Due to changes in the school system and following a long period with no restoration work, the school building was re-structured and extensively renovated. The refurbishment concept sustains the character and visual impact of the exposed concrete building. Existing qualities will be consolidated by demolishing some parts of the building and they will quite naturally be supplemented by new interventions. The building interior has been restructured and the different users disentangled: primary school, kindergarten, fire brigade, association and public areas have been organised in such a way that they are able to run optimally. Selective interventions in the entrance area give more clarity to what was previously an unsatisfactory entry set-up. A new, large exposed concrete porch marks the main entrance, creating a protected area for a diverse range of utilizations. The lowering of the entrance hall level means that the village square is able to flow seamlessly into the foyer at ground level. The multi-storey access zone links the different levels and by means of a clear choice of materials in monochrome colours, this space will be subtly orchestrated to create a harmonious spatial sculpture. This forms a contrast to the materials and the colour accentuation used for the teaching and multi-functional rooms, which are dominated by areas with strong colours that emanate into the zone of access. The outside appearance is enhanced by the contrast between light concrete parapets and dark strips of window and the new design of the outside area does justice to its importance as the epicentre of village life.