The Copenhagen International School, designed by C.F. Møller Architects, isn’t just a place for academics – it’s a solar power plant, covered in 12,000 photovoltaic panels that provide more than half the school’s electricity. The formally inventive project is a 2018 AZ Awards Winner for Commercial/Institutional Architecture Over 1,000 Square Metres.
What better way to teach the next generation environmental responsibility than to make the school itself an extraordinary demonstration of state-of-the-art sustainability. This is the ethos at the heart of the Copenhagen International School, which is covered in 12,000 photovoltaic panels that produce 300 megawatt hours – enough to provide more than half of the school’s annual electricity.
As we all know, waterfronts are being converted, but you usually only get residential and office towers, so it’s great to see a public school be built. It’s like a detonator – it’s bound to make more good things happen around it.” – Michel Rojkind
An institution for 1,200 elementary and high-school students that doubles as a solar power plant has its educational perks. The inner workings of the teal-hued solar facade are part of the curriculum, which includes classes in solar studies and enables students to monitor the campus’s energy production. The formally inventive 25,000-square-metre building – the largest international school in Denmark – is broken down into four smaller “towers” to accommodate the various grade levels, and the classrooms are strategically placed mainly along the building’s perimeter to optimize daylight and views. There is also a grey-water system for handling the school’s non-potable H2O needs.
Copenhagen International School
C.F. Møller Architects, Aarhus, Denmark
Mads Mandrup, Thue Borgen Hasløv, Anne Lilke Krag Hansen and Jørgen Juul