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Secondary school Achtern Diek

NEW BUILDING Secondary school Achtern Diek

As the pearl of the Wurster North Sea coast, Dorum is probably best known among families and dog lovers. The small town is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the region. But of course people also live here, about 3,500 of them, and they also need education. The new Achtern Diek secondary school is the most modern school building in Cuxland, replacing the previous secondary school. And why a new building? Because the energy-efficient renovation of the ramified building fabric from the 1950s to the 1970s simply does not pay off. Until the opening of the new school, however, the existing building remained in use for teaching purposes.

New secondary school with classrooms and subject classrooms, refectory, assembly hall and library
County Cuxhaven
Aug. Prien G2-Landschaft
1-5 HOAI
about 9.200 m² GFA
Alsumer Straße in Dorum
Christian Haase

If there were stars for school buildings, the new Achtern Diek secondary school would have to receive the highest number. The most modern school in Cuxland is being built in Dorum. (Nord24)

Secondary school Achtern Diek
Site map
Ground floor
First floor
Learning world
Learning world
Elavation south

With two overlapping, L-shaped structures, the new building is strongly oriented towards the cubature of the building site. The scissor-like opening on all four sides creates four courtyards that offer different quality of stay and possibilities for use. Divided into an all-day area, a specialist room wing, a class wing and an administration wing, the functions are clearly recognisable from the outside in terms of height and colour. What unites them is a common, two-storey foyer, which is both the centre and the heart of the school and connects all areas with each other. At the intersection of the two structures is the library, which towers as a light tower on the third floor above the roofs of the other functions.

The all-day area is architecturally embraced by the administration wing. This area is accessed via the two-storey foyer and contains the canteen with learning kitchens, rooms for social work and, above all, the auditorium with break hall and stage. Mobile partition walls allow the stage to be used during normal school and break times, creating flexible usage scenarios. The learning kitchens are directly connected to the foyer and the auditorium, so that the pupils themselves can become waiters and waitresses at internal school events and parties and offer catering in a short way.

Secondary school Achtern Diek describes itself as a place of learning and living where creativity and joy are highly valued and pupils are challenged according to their abilities. This is also supported by the architectural concept. As an all-day school without an early commitment to a school branch, the general teaching areas extend over three floors. These are organised as clusters so that different types of learning and the spatial requirements for inclusion and internal differentiation can really be lived here because the boundaries are so fluid. Differentiation rooms between the classrooms provide additional areas where cooperative learning takes place and meeting points are created. The subject-specific classrooms for art, textiles, design and handicrafts, for example, are located in a separate wing of the building.

The predominant material in the surrounding area is clinker brick. Thus, the school façade was also chosen from this typical northern German façade material. The different shades of red, orange and brown give the façade a lively appearance and separate the individual areas of use from one another. And the material runs through to the foyer: as a place of encounter, the brick façades were extended from the outside to the inside through the rounded corners of the building structures and meet here with the white plastered walls and the exposed concrete plinth of the foyer.

Voices from the team

On the way to Dorum along all the beautiful, ancient brick buildings and the old land, it became clear pretty quickly that our design would have a brick façade.


Although the construction project was not a conversion during ongoing operations, it was nevertheless a challenge to shield the construction site from the ongoing daily school routine in the existing building.