Connecting the landscape
school under green slope
Graafschap College, Doetinchem
Just outside the centre of Doetinchem, between the Energieweg and an adjacent residential district, the Graafschap College is situated with its more than 700 pupils. This area forms the transitional zone between the small-scale residential district and the through-road. Together with the adjacent VMBO (preparatory secondary vocational education) Metzo College, the Graafschap College makes a scenic connection between these two spheres. As a part of this, the green covered slopes merge into the grass roof of the Graafschap College. The various school functions have been placed under this grass roof.
At the side of the Energieweg, the Graafschap College is green covered, and the auditorium and the block containing restaurant and gym cut through this slope. At the side of the residential district, the school consists of several so-called ‘display windows’, which clearly show the student workplaces, such as a restaurant, kitchen, bakery and hairdressing salon. In addition, the main entrance is situated on this side.
The school is constructed alongside an open connecting zone, with the theory classrooms on the side of the slope, right above the half sunken parking basement. The student workplaces are situated on the side of the residential district. Due to the voids, the connecting zone couples the various levels and patios, which in turn project light deep into the building.
The mainly white interior of the Regional training centre has been complemented with a limited number of colour accents, which make the various function areas recognizable. The two levels on the ground floor are coupled by a long, connecting piece of furniture, in which the lockers have been located. At the side of the auditorium and the patios, places to lounge have been added to this piece of furniture, thus also making the connecting zone a place for the students to spend time. For the auditorium, the choice was made to use long benches and large seating units, instead of separately placed chairs. Thanks to this, the auditorium always looks tidy and well-organized, even after the breaks.