They are the children’s first living spaces outside their families, their first learning spaces and places of social encounters. That is why it is particularly important to us that the architecture of kindergartens is conceived along pedagogical concepts and creates spaces for play and exploration. In the case of our kindergarten in the northern Weinviertel region, we have created more than just a string of white rooms. It is a place that children will remember.
Net Usable Floor Area
Feel good in the wood kindergarden
The competition design was still somewhat different: That wood would be so present in the interior only became apparent during the course of planning. In order to create the most cosy and comfortable atmosphere, we decided to use spruce walls and coarse particle boards that are sanded but not painted. This allows the wood to grow with the children, to live and acquire a patina. The spatial impression is also enhanced by the roof construction: The exposed wooden beams unconsciously convey the idea of architecture to the children – they propose a rhythm and structure and reveal the construction of the building. The little ones can recreate their kindergarten with building blocks and gain an understanding of how building, how houses work.
»We like the combination of warm security and green expanse characteristic of traditional farmhouses. A feeling we revive with our kindergarten project.«
Lots of light from above
As the house technology such as ventilation and subfloor heating is integrated into the floor structure, it was possible to leave the wooden ceiling visible. Light rays enter through the skylights and bring natural light into the corridors, reflecting off the exposed glulam beams and casting everchanging patterns onto the group walls. The outer cladding is also dominated by wood. The façade is composed of three different widths of slats, which are varnished in grey.
More space to frolic
In our opinion, the entire kindergarten should be a playground – so we widened the corridor area, for example, and created even more play areas. Built-in shelves serve as a library; there are niches for looking at picture books or playing with trains. From the “village street” the children enter their three houses, the group rooms with more private retreat niches, which they can use as sleeping bunks or play kitchens. The different sized rooms encourage social interaction and give the children the opportunity to exchange ideas or withdraw once in a while. In the exercise room they can run around, do gymnastics, and play tag, even when it is cold or raining. The large windows provide a view of the birch alley on the neighbouring property, bringing nature inside.
The three kindergarten group houses stretch out like fingers into the large garden and embrace daylight from three sides. Each have their own access to the outdoors, to their own courtyard. Together with the pergola, this achieves atmospheric, shady play areas, which the kindergarten teachers can easily oversee. A reminiscence of the traditional Lower Austrian elongated farmhouse typology, reinterpreted for the next generations.
Type Of Commission
Gross Floor Area
Scope Of Commission
Net Usable Floor Area
Julia Aigner (PL), Daniel Kleber, Barbara Hohensinn, Anita Bartos, Helene Merkle