Salvi Weber Architekter is an architecture practice based in between two cities, Vienna and Bern. It was founded by Michael Salvi and Thomas Weber in 2009, since when they realized various projects in the realm of office, school, and residential buildings in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland.
Absam Primary School is the latest project implemented by the team of Salvi Weber Architekter. The main aim was to upgrade and improve an existing primary school in the Tyrolean municipality of Absam, Austria. The new building provides a space for the two-story kidergarten, spacious underground sport hall, a protected and inviting schoolyard and a music school, set under the roof of the historic primary school building.
As the building was projected to communicate warmth and comfort, the choice of materials and color concept took a significant role in designing. The pastel colors with oiled oak wood furnishing, solid oak parquet floors, felt curtains, and a light-brown wood wool acoustic ceilings were designed with keeping in mind the importance of creating a space for developing the creativity of the children. The interior promotes a philosophy prevalent in the work of the architects.
"Here the rooms are structured into a harmonious spatial continuum, a playful learning landscape at a child’s scale with a diverse range of attractive views both to the outside and inside, horizontally and vertically,” explained the team of Salvi Weber Architekter. The building gives birth to eight group rooms, for the little ones and adults as well. Their functions can be modified by optimizing the use of the area through doors, curtains, and sliding panels. A functional volume is continued in the underground gym, which is dramatically lit despite the location underground. "An important element for the spatial impression is the band of skylight windows along the complete length of the hall, which not only provides daylight but also a sensual connection to the sky, the above, and the schoolyard, where, in turn, its perimeter serves as a bench for the children,” added the architects. The hall is connected to the primary school via an underground passegaway and its historic hip roof gives birth to a music school. Its space-saving oak wood furnishing and white painted roof structure refers to the materiality of other elements of the building.
The team of Salvi Weber Architekter undertook the demanding task to reconstruct the old building and blend its new form into the Alpine landscape. This challenging requirement was solved with a spectacular outcome.