More than 2000 students build the foundations for their professional future at Geldern Vocational College. That makes the vocational education centre in the Lower Rhine municipality of Kleve, which opened its doors in 2016, one of the largest in North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany’s most populous federal state. In just under two-and-a-half years of construction and with a budget of 36 million euros, a multi-functional and architecturally remarkable complex was created – and showcased with BEGA luminaires.
The college consists of a main building in the shape of a comb, which houses classrooms, an assembly hall, a cafeteria and administration. It is flanked by three single-storey workshop buildings and a two-storey technology building. The architecture of the new construction is reminiscent of early modern industrial buildings, with the function of each unit dictating its style. Case in point are the glass-fronted cafeteria and the standalone library.
Although the vocational college was built in a predominantly commercial environment, the landscape architects of GEO3 in Bedburg-Hau managed to preserve the rural character typical of the Lower Rhine region. Various water and vegetation zones, as well as green areas around the buildings give students the opportunity to combine indoor education with outdoor relaxation.
The footpaths near the buildings and water features are lined with shielded BEGA system bollards, whose light is emitted 360 degrees via a conical reflector. Light building elements evenly illuminate the forecourt. The light is simultaneously reflected by the building and directed onto the ground by a reflector. BEGA LED ceiling and wall luminaires are used as unshielded wall luminaires with no visible frame screws. They are positioned between the structure-giving ribbon windows, accentuating the coal-fired bricks of the striking façade at a height of 2 metres. The BEGA luminaires therefore make an essential contribution to the architectural theme of Geldern Vocational College: the combination of function and aesthetics.
Architects Tschoban Voss Architekten, Hamburg
Landscape Architecture Office GEO3, Bedburg-Hau