Client: Riaz Municipality
Status: Competition (2013)
Clasification: 1 prize
Location: Riaz, Switzerland
Climate: Continental, Temperate
Scale: 18.000 ㎡ Large
Types: Education, School
The new secondary school (for 12-16 year-olds) marks an outer limit to the buildings of Riaz, where the village ends and farmland begins. The building’s star-shaped design underlines this landmark status, establishing both a gateway to the village and an external development boundary.
A transport hub for vehicles, bicycles, buses and pedestrians connects the new school to the road, providing simple and functional accessibility for the school and its extracurricular activities as well as for the adjacent land earmarked for future public buildings.
The building is designed in a folded shape, protecting the courtyard from the noise of nearby roads and from the winds that are prevalent in this location. The courtyard is the heart of the school site, opening wide towards the south and establishing a close visual relationship with the centre of the village and the church as its reference landmark. The Moléson Mountain and its alpine massif form the backdrop – showcasing the outstanding environment in which the school is set.
The ground level mainly houses communal and/or public activities, with three independent sheltered entrances, inviting visitors into the courtyard and then into the heart of the building. The entrances provide separate access to different activities outside school hours. The school’s main entrance is located at the centre of the building where a wide staircase flanks the library, which opens onto the courtyard. On the upper floors, standard classrooms are located around the outside of the building, establishing a connection with the surrounding landscape and the outside world, while various special facilities overlook the courtyard.
Compact and functional, this new school building marks the entrance to the village of Riaz, relating to its surrounding environment and clearly articulating its social and regional role.