A new school building and temporary school pavilion for the Heitera school catalyze the city’s desire to enhance the school’s play spaces. The project is deployed in three adjacent sites. The first of these sites is conceptually based on nesting. Custom-made to respond to both specific constraints and the children’s needs, three giant, nests anchor the edge of a wooded grove and encourage appropriation by all age groups, especially the youngest. Children climb, jump, scramble, hide and find their balance in and around the different structures. The innovative forms encourage healthy play and provide opportunities to explore regardless of agility or age.


The second site focusses on exploration. It is composed of a willow tunnel and labyrinth, balancing logs, a place to slide, sit and climb. Positioned in a contained space, these structures are designed for young children and take advantage of the site’s topography, creating a powerful playful atmosphere protected from a nearby busy street.

The third site explores the ground-plane. Divided into multiple spaces on different levels, it frames both a multisports court and a skatepark. The insertion of a temporary school pavillon on this site offers the opportunity to renew the surrounding surfaces. Oversized, bright forms and graphic gestures animate the floor. The 2-dimensional shapes, created with a thick skin of paint, define each activity space and entice exaggerated student movement across the court. The intervention adds a new life to the old cracked asphalt. The lower level is transformed into a skatepark so as to take full advantage of new undulations. It creates an ideal zone for skateboarding, BMX’s and scooters and attracts a young, dynamic public. The graphics help reinforce the connection between the two levels.

Project location: Route de la Heitera 17, 1700 Fribourg, Switzerland
Design year: 2016-2017
Year Built: 2019


LILA 2024 Sponsor