Anne Frankschool in Utrecht opened its doors to the public on Monday 22 April 2013.
During the official ceremony, the school was awarded the bi-annual environmental prize by the municipality of Utrecht for its innovative use of wood and its energy efficiency. It has achieved a “Class B Healthy and Fresh Environment” classification according to Dutch regulations. In addition to a preschool education centre, and childcare facility, the school accommodates 12 classrooms and a gymnasium.
Bathed in light, Anne Frankschool smells of wood and features playful elements throughout that appeal to children. Butterflies have been cut out of the steel pillars and wooden cabinets, and the hallways house colorful orange stools. The gymnasium is located in the center of the building and contains two adjoining patios; one for junior and one for intermediate classes.
A beautiful wooden staircase leads to the senior classes which make a spacious impression due to the building’s sloping roof. The wide, transparent hallways allow for easy supervision by teaching staff and are equipped with worktops providing space for students to work independently.
Natural cross-layered wood material sourced from sustainable forests in Austria is featured on the school’s walls, floors and ceilings in order to provide a warm and appealing school environment. The building’s interior is fully integrated into this wooden hull: counters, stairs, open and closed cabinets as well as working areas form a coherent whole with the rest of the building.
This material selection is both aesthetic and functional as it has high insulation performance values, regulates moisture levels and is heat absorbing. Natural ventilation, proper acoustics and an abundance of natural light pouring in from windows and roof lights make Anne Frankschool an exceptional educational building.