Secondary School in Baesweiler, Germany

Rongen Architekten
Propsteigasse 2, 41849 Wassenberg, Germany

Baesweiler technical data:

Treated Floor Area (TFA)Specific space heating demand
Wing 1 - administration 1,017 m² 13 kWh/m²a
Gymnasium 1984.4 m² 19 kWh/m²a
Wing 3 & 4 3724.8 m² 15 kWh/m²a
Wing 2 – Science labs 2,700 m² 14 kWh/m²a

The City of Baesweiler has commited itself to energy efficient optimisation of all official building stock in a well-thought-out course of action. As a first step, 21 local authority buildings were analysed and their energy-relevant optimisation potential was investigated. An exemplary planning strategy was developed for this purpose. After an exact appraisal including a user survey and detailed analysis of the building data, targets were set for each building which ranged from the minimum building standard based on EnEV 2009 to the Passive House Standard. The results were comprehensively documented and are available for other local authorities and the general public in the form of a full study by the DBU (German Federal Environment Foundation). In this way, it will be possible for other local authorities to approach energy-oriented modernisations methodically and to minimise any shortcomings in planning processes.

As the first measure in this project, the secondary school including its sports hall was modernised and energy-optimised to the Passive House Standard – a unique exemplary model! The measure is unique because so far there are only two existing buildings that have been certified as Passive Houses, which are firstly much smaller than the Baesweiler Secondary School, and secondly, they have compound exterior insulation. Besides great environmental benefits like saving 90 % in heating costs and saving 530 tons of CO2 per year, the decision-makers of the City of Baesweiler made it their objective to contribute to the elimination of a misconception which also many architects subscribe to, that “Passive Houses are thickly insulated, disproportionate, impersonal blocks that are impossible to realise in a good quality architectural style”.

Fig. 1: Wings 3 and 4 (left) as well as Wing 1 (right) before the
Fig. 2: This is how Wings 3 and 4 (left) and Wing 1 (right) will
look like after the modernisation.

The heating demand of the secondary school before the modernisation was 220 kWh/(m²·a). After the energy-relevant refurbishment, this decreased by almost 90.7 % to 15 kWh/(m²·a).

A geothermal probe system (probe length ca. 1700 m) is used for direct cooling (Natural Cooling) and for heating it is used in conjunction with a heat pump system. Thus the focus is on the use of renewable energy.

In the summer, the school is cooled “passively”. Sun protection attachments prevent rooms from overheating. The building mass absorbs the heat during the day, and is cooled at night by the cool night air through automatically regulated opening of the windows or by the ventilation system, and the next day it is available again as a storage mass (night-time cooling). In addition, supply air is pre-cooled by the geothermal probe system.

All wings of the building are constantly supplied with fresh air at a pleasant temperature by the controlled ventilation system. A special advantage of this, particularly in schools, is the considerable reduction in the CO2 concentrations in the classrooms, due to this schoolchildren no longer become tired so quickly.

The lighting system in each wing was also energy-optimised. Areas that are used only sporadically are lighted up as required by means of motion detectors. In continuously used areas with sufficient daylight, like classrooms, offices, recreational rooms and the sports hall, the lights are dimmed by means of sensors depending on the amount of daylight, and if necessary, switched off completely when not required.

For the sports hall, a thermal solar system provides hot water.

Fig. 3: Wing 1 before

Fig. 4: Wing 1 after moderni-
sation; The thermal envelope
now “hangs” in front of the
bearing structure.

Fig. 5: The history of the school building is
recognisable from the inside too.
Fig. 6: The completed wing 1. The architectural
style should remain true to itself.

Fig. 7: The completed Wing 1.

With the energy efficient optimisation of the school, its internal operation could also be improved. A new school canteen was added, enabling it to qualify as a full-time school. A self-study centre, a bigger staff room, and an additional study for teachers were also provided, and the computer room was improved. The structure of the science department has been more clearly defined.

Rapid implementation was possible due to the successful application for funding by the State of Northrhine-Westfalia in the context of the Investment Pact I (for which this application was “selected” as the best application and therefore a subsidy of € 4.8 million was granted).

Project overview

Rongen Architekten
Propsteigasse 2, 41849 Wassenberg, Germany

City of Baesweiler
Mr Peters
Mariastrasse 2, 52499 Baesweiler, Germany
+49 (0) 2401|800354
Represented by the Mayor Professor Dr. Linkens

Project details:
Planning period: 2008 ff.
Implementation period: 2009 ff.
Net floor area: 12,841 m²
Costs: €8,527,000 pre-tax
Completed work phases: 1-9

See also

examples/non-residential_buildings/passive_house_schools/central_europe/secondary_school_in_baesweiler_germany.txt · Last modified: 2014/09/18 18:19 (external edit)