The Henricus School Building of the Year 2018

22 November 2018

The renovation and expansion of primary school De Henricus in Amsterdam, a design by Berger Barnett Architects, was crowned as School Building of the Year 2018 on Thursday evening 8 November 2018.

Catholic primary school De Henricus is part of the so-called Catharina Complex, a municipal monument consisting of two schools, a church and related buildings. The whole was designed between 1953 and 1960 by the architects Evers and Sarlemijn according to the principles taught by architect-monk Dom Hans van der Laan.

The elementary school has now been renovated and expanded to the design of Berger Barnett Architects. An important task here was to guide the transition from classroom education, for which the building was designed, to open work forms. Without negating the proportions in architecture that were at work in the Bossche School.

With a reticent architecture that builds on the existing in a contemporary way, Berger Barnett Architects has succeeded well here according to the jury. The monumental school has been prepared for the future.

Restrained and pronounced
In yet a vulnerable neighborhood in Amsterdam Nieuw-West a beautiful school has been realized with a limited budget, the jury observes. The architecture is both modest and explicit. Subdued, because with great respect for existing building. Pronounced in clear choices, such as transforming the tour into a corridor.

The jury is also very enthusiastic about the detailing. The intermediate doors are equipped with frameless glass, so that's possible. And the glass in the tour is cleverly placed on the inside of the columns, so that the image and the experience of the tour remain intact. The jury also liked the choice of a hard material with cavities to solve the acoustics in the classrooms.



Image: Leonard Faustle

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