The decision to expand the Långbrodal school in Stockholm was made in June 2014. The building work started in summer 2015 and lasted for two years, just as planned. The school building was inaugurated on 28 September this year. Three of the buildings that were in the school yard were demolished or moved and replaced with a brand-new schoolhouse on two floors with a surface area larger than that of the former main building. The new schoolhouse had to accommodate 50 percent more students, from 400 to 600.
Aperto Architects designed a building with many key architectural features, such as lots of daylight, spatial sequences, insights, outlines and views within the building. The new building was designed to feel modern and forward-looking, reflecting the school's values and its focus on the development and progress of its students. The building communicates this through clear contrasts between old and new. The philosophy behind the design was "Sustainable internal and external, sustainable over time".
"Finally, Långbrodal school has premises that fit its purpose – a new and stylish building that together with the old and beautiful building forms a nice school for local children,” says Olle Burell, School Commissioner and Chairman of SISAB, the city-owned company that owns and manages Stockholm’s pre-schools and schools.
The new building has two 15-meter-tall concrete house gables in graphic concrete featuring artistic ornaments by artist Rebecka Bebben Andersson. The artwork called “No Smoking!” gives the students a great deal to discover, including crocodiles and a gorilla in underwear.
In her work, Andersson was inspired by her own school days and the drawings she made at that time. She drew for a full day, and the multi-meter drawing laid the foundation for the two gable facades.
"The artistic configuration of the Långbrodal school combines indefinable daydreaming with permanent concrete. I wanted my proposal for the schoolhouse gables to give students and teachers an opportunity to think big and without limitations – that everything can be interpreted differently. What is right and wrong changes over time. The artwork should be able to function as part of the teaching and be an initiator of discussions. What's beautiful-ugly-right-wrong-good-bad-real, and so on," says Andersson.