Bergen inkluderingssenter – Landåssvingen 15

Landåssvingen 15 is 3RW’s project for the renovation of Bergen’s Lærerhøgskolen, the teachers’ college, for new educational, cultural and sports activities, including an introduction centre for newly arrived foreign language students, as well as an adult education centre. In collaboration with HLM, our office won the assignment for Bergen municipality to develop the existing college in Landås into a building catered to its new tenants use and needs. New institutional bodies in Landåssvingen 15 include Nygård skule, the introduction centre for refugees, and “Etat for integrering”, the Bergen chapter of the Norwegian Agency for Integration. The project is a pilot for architecture and human rights; this pilot is undertaken in collaboration with Bergen municipal architects and the Rafto Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the global promotion of human rights.

In both programming and sketch phases, a strong focus has been given to the design of an architecture oriented towards openness and inclusivity buildings, with a special attention to safe meeting places and stimulating learning environments. Moreover, our team has pursued a significant sustainability angle. Extensive reuse and the preservation of recyclable building materials, and fixtures and fittings are part of our plea to engage in sustainable, circular architectural methods.

The main building mass is to house the teaching part of the program, which asks for spacious milieus; for high-quality and safe learning areas for employees, students and other users. The project aims to provide the best possible built framework for contemporary teaching and integration activities. Landåssvingen 15 will welcome high numbers of professional employees working at the Introduction Center and at the Agency for Inclusion (“Etat for integrering”). All administrative offices are planned in line with the concept of activity-based workplaces.

Nygård skule, the introduction centre for refugees, and “Etat for integrering” are placed within the existing teacher’s college, which is planned to open in the fall of 2023. Interestingly, Nygård school is the largest school in the city of Bergen, with over 1 500 students of diverse age: it functions as a professional training centre for adults, and is one of the principal locations for the teaching of Norwegian cultural and social skills. It also offers a variety of work and language workshops.

Despite programmatic demands for extensive security measures, the building is designed to be as open as possible, with generous spaces for social and professional meeting places. Existing building blocks (B, C, D, E, F) consist of five continuous college buildings made of concrete and other modular façade elements from 1963. The ensemble is completed at its centre by an administrative building dating from 1995 which connects to the older buildings with an atrium-like glass covered street, and by a built volume called Building A. This building contains auditoriums, a canteen, classrooms and offices. Building B houses a library; Building C, administration rooms and auditorium; Building D, three gymnasiums with wardrobes and showers; Building E, classrooms and special rooms; and Build F, a swimming pool. The project also includes an upgrade of existing outdoor sports facilities with new wardrobe facilities and a clubhouse for the local sports team, Baune.

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