I don't want to go home, mom.
Bombach nursery school, Zurich, Switzerland, 2019
Called by its residents "the village in the city", Bombach Estate had been completed and was already inhabited. Only the offices in the building alongside the square were still vacant. Here, two nursery schools with after-school care provided by the city of Zurich were planned. But how could one transform this exposed location, so close to a traffic junction, into a place suitable for children? Moreover, the spatial layout entails certain conditions – originally planned for a doctor's practice. The solution is: colour, light, material – and the art of architectural improvisation!
As the extension is planned for a limited period of time, we decided to forego elaborate ceiling panelling. The direct rawness of the rooms was left intact. The room-dividing walls were constructed with marine box plywood ("tigerwood", as the children call it) with integrated furniture and wardrobe niches. The timber creates a cozy atmosphere and emphasises the provisional character.
The artist Peter Roesch hand-painted the long concrete wall with a golden fairy-tale creature that meanders through the hallway inviting the children to reach out and touch it. Coloured glass brings light into the corridor and creates a lively spectacle of colours on the concrete wall depending on the time of day. Mirrors visually extend the room and, together with the painted seating niches, colourful pillars and Christmas lights hanging from the ceiling, create a magical atmosphere, making it easy to ignore the noise of the traffic outside.
At dusk, the nursery school illuminates the square with its coloured light revealing the cheerful children's world within the large building .
28a Frankentalerstrasse, 8049 Zurich, Switzerland
Planning and completion 2018–2019
Building Department of the City of Zurich
Simone Liner (project management), Florian Hoch (construction site management), Peter Roesch (colour concept/colour design), Natalie Bachmann, Valton Rexha