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Atuarfik Hans Lynge School, Qinngorput, Greenland

Tuesday 07 May 2013

Nurture through nature

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08/05/13 Keith Fielder, London
Given the extreme weather conditions in Greenland at first glance the main entrance appears bizarre without a porte cochere to protect both the interior and the children from the blasting winds and influxes of snow as they troop inside from the school bus. In addition it looks as though each classroom has a door also without a porch or protection from weather. On the first floor they have doors leading to an open balcony with open stairs. Sorry to say I just don't understand this design. Can anyone explain it?
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KHR Arkitekter A/S-designed Atuarfik Hans Lynge School acts as signpost for new marketplace in Qinngorput, Greenland 

Atuarfik Hans Lynge School in Nuuk, Greenland is many things: a cutting-edge educational institution; a lesson in sustainable school design; and a signpost for a newly masterplanned marketplace project in Qinngorput. Designed by Danish firm KHR Arkitekter A/S, the 6,000 sq m project has been stitched into the rocky urban fabric as ‘the centre for the future development of the town’.

The €17m project was completed in partnership with Troldtekt whose eco-friendly acoustic panels lend a natural touch to this rustic scheme. The school building is set in a rugged location at the foot of mountains in Qinngorput. A series of staggered classrooms branch off from a main school building in the centre, taking full advantage of picturesque views out to the harbour.

Due to the craggy topography of the site, the school building is vulnerable to blasting winds and influxes of snow or melting water. As such, large eaves have been incorporated to protect the structure with a longitudinal stone gutter to defend the northern façade against rushes of water. Carefully angled roofs guide strong winds up over the building in a smooth motion, shielding it from over-zealous gusts.

Drawing on the organic, unrefined nature of the project site, KHR Arkitekter opted for an extensive use of wooden materials throughout the build. Troldtekt’s acoustic panels are made with 100% natural wood fibres mixed with cement and give the desired organic feel alongside functional benefits which include: high sound absorption, high durability, natural breathability, low cost life cycle performance and Silver certification within the Cradle to Cradle scale.

Internally the Atuarfik Hans Lynge School incorporates lengthy expanses of window to draw in natural light and tall entrances which give a light and airy feel. Blocks of colour in reds, yellows and oranges enliven an otherwise neutrally-hued form in dramatic fashion, drawing attention to the facility which stands starkly against its mountainous backdrop.

Sian Disson
News Editor

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 17(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
KHR arkitekter

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