VÅGEN high school and SANDNES Culture Academy
An upper secondary school for aesthetic subjects in Vågen in Sandnes, with places for around 800 students.
In a convenient location in the centre of Sandnes, this school can accommodate 800 students. The school caters for a range of subjects in respect of media and communication, drawing and design, arts and crafts, music, dance and drama.
The building is 22 500 m² in area, including a sports hall, a lecture hall with 380 seats, various audition rooms and rooms equipped for gymnastics.
The project has a strict simplicity that reflects the simple and logical structure of the layout. At the same time, the individual building elements lend a dynamic force to the campus. “The Cocoon”, in the atrium, is one such element. With its playful, “organic” form over four levels, it protrudes through the roof and leans out across the street to the west.
On the third floor there is a continuous glass façade with alternating coloured glass up to 170 m long, providing a powerful visual element in the urban landscape. One characteristic building elements towards the north is a “functional” building with a plastered façade. The refurbishment of this building is similar to that for a building which has been demolished, but which the municipality of Sandnes would like to include as part of a larger, older local environment.
The school is characterised by refined use of materials. “The Cocoon” is clad with larch both inside and out. Heavier, more or less open building elements are clad with travertine, while cafeteria areas and foyers have up to three levels of glass façade facing the south and the river promenade. The buildings appear to be open towards the south and east, but more enclosed facing the street towards the west and north.
The school is based on educational programmes with aesthetic curricula. Interaction and communication across disciplines but with options for specialisation have been leading themes throughout the development of the master plan.
The main atrium is concentrated in a large central public area, as is clear from all four levels at the school. Good links between open staircases and lifts in this area link all four levels together. Students and teachers will meet here from the various teaching departments.
The various student groups have teaching areas made up of classrooms and group rooms of all sizes. These areas are characterised by the use of glass, providing vast amounts of light and openness.
Emphasis has been placed on providing universal access throughout the entire campus.