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New Campus FH, Germany – design by FAR frohn&rojas, architects

6 Mar 2010

New Campus FH Düsseldorf

Architects : FAR frohn&rojas

New Campus FH Dusseldorf – Learning Landscape

The roots of European university research and teaching, are not to be found within the highly specialized interior spaces that we know today, but instead rather in the open and publicly accessible garden. Plato, for example, is said to have taught his students in the shade of an olive tree in one of the open olive groves of Athens.

New Campus FH Düsseldorf FH Düsseldorf Campus FH Düsseldorf

These initial informal setups quickly became formalized over just decades and centuries and, already in classical times, patterns of spatial specialization in the form of gyms and different learning spaces emerged. This process of spatial and technological specialization, as well retreat from the public sphere, characterized much of the development of educational spaces, until the recent past. In Germany it culminated in the newly established isolated and self-sufficient campuses outside the cities, which emerged in the 1970s.

The growing importance of regional identification for universities, the heightened interest in alternatives to frontal, lecture-like teaching and the growing decentralization of learning thanks to digital technologies and blended learning challenge this idea of the isolated university as it has been cultivated in Germany.

The key argument of our design proposal is that of revitalising the original classical idea of the learning landscape and developing it further. The ever-green valley and promenade create active ties between the campus and the city, At the same time the learning landscape weaves itself through the campus as a web of interior and exterior learning and communication zones: the park, the ring-boulevard with its spatial pockets, the orangerie foyers and the gallery zones within the individual schools. As essential environmental benefits, the characteristic landscape element of “mountain slopes” is optimized for solar exposure on the south-facing sides and rainwater collection toward the north, while the valley creates thermal exchange with the ground through C02- lances resulting in an ever-green subtropical flora in the center of the
zero-emission campus.

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New Campus FH Düsseldorf images / information from Frohn & Rojas Architects


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