Gammel Hellerup High School Gymnasium + Multipurpose Hall
12,500 SQ FT
Year completed: 2013
Project architect: Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG)
Project partners: CG Jensen, EKJ, H. Helbo Hansen A/S
The Gammel Hellerup High School Gymnasium, designed by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), is a response to the local high school’s request for a multifunctional space in which its students could engage in physical activities and socialize. Wishing to have the facility placed in its existing courtyard while maintaining sight lines and connectivity with the 1950’s-era school building, BIG’s solution was to build the gymnasium sixteen feet below ground. Inside, sports are the typical activity in the 12,500 square foot space, and the school has experienced an increase in high-caliber athletes applying for admission. The space is also equipped to serve as a multipurpose venue and can accommodate a variety of large group gatherings, from academic to social opportunities.
Incorporating Active Recreation strategies was rather straightforward due to the required program. The innovation came with the implementation of Active Building strategies. The sloping roof of the gymnasium is an accessible, dynamic area for social gatherings and acts a large hilly schoolyard designed with a “molehill” peak. This creative plan transforms a historically underutilized courtyard. White furniture is affixed to the curvilinear roof in distinct areas, which offer informal congregation spaces. These are routinely used for class activities as well as social purposes. A new entry to the school removes the preexisting barrier between neighboring community, which has enabled the school to host community events.
Active Design Highlights: