Mercator Rupelmonde Primary School

  • area / size 21,366 sqft
  • Completed 2019
  • Location Kruibeke, Belgium,
  • MR. STIR was engaged by Mercator Rupelmonde Primary School to design their campus in Kruibeke, Belgium.

    For the design of Mercator in Rupelmonde, 2 elements were essential for the spatial layout.

    On the one hand, the integration of the school into the busy urban tissue of the ‘Dorpsstraat’ and the vital place that the school has within the village community. On the other hand, the significance of the school as a place where the children of Rupelmonde spend their childhood and which must offer plenty of space for social education.

    Concerning the integration into the ribbon, the size and scale of the surrounding buildings were important in the design choices. The school with the forecourt provides an essential opening in the street wall and, with its greenery, light, and air, is an important component of the environment. By splitting the traffic flows, a pleasant and safe front space is created. Asides, from the interplay of height differences, special places are created with a unique experiential value.

    This unique experiential value addresses the need for meeting zones, both for kids to play and chatting places for teachers and parents. The pitches are above street level and have a masonry parapet. As a result, there is a physical closure of the street, but the visual contact is preserved. With these design features, the school terrain is an element of the larger public space and remains part of the community.

    Based on the program, the school is divided into 3 volumes, each with its own function. The building section with the classrooms is the largest volume and consists of 2 floors. The volume with the sports facilities is one and a half floors and has its own entrance. The third building section links the two larger volumes and is intended for administrative functions.

    Design: MR. STIR
    Photography: Serge Technau Photography