case study
Design: G-Quadrat Architektur GmbH, Photos: Torben Eskerod
Daylight concept

Due to the shape of the site it was difficult to provide enough sunlight. Luckily at that time Mr. Grossheimann was invited by VELUX to attend the first "Healthy Buildings Day" in Brussels. "Healthy Buildings Day" is an initiative of VELUX - a congress where various guests including policy-makers, house builders, housing association representatives, building owners, thought leaders, and media meet to share their thoughts on how to build healthy, innovative, sustainable and affordable houses.
At the congress Mr. Grossheimann started a dialogue on sunlight in kindergartens with VELUX experts, who invited him to collaborate on designing a perfectly light-flooded environment for children. And so the Kita on Hauptstrasse became a show object for daylight solutions.

Before and After

The concept plans were taken by VELUX to build a 3D model and check the light conditions with Daylight Visualizer software. Daylight Visualizer simulations of daylight in the rooms can be done for any day and any daytime, needless to say in the right geographic location. It's a precise instrument to measure the intensity of daylight in the planned building.

The results were as expected - an average, large playroom can never be bathed in sunlight. VELUX experts recognized the potential of a variety of roofs and suggested many diverse products: from light tunnels through to conventional roof windows up to large glazed elements, used in the flat roof area.

On the left first floor with facade windows only, on the right after addition of VELUX products. Daylight Visualizer analysis showed how dark a big a standard playroom would have been compared to how it looks with roof windows. Also, the corridor with wardrobes became a well-lit zone where children can play, not just a mere utility area.

case study

Design: G-Quadrat Architektur GmbH, Photos: Torben Eskerod

Bettina Uesbeck, manager of kindergarten

Our working conditions here are so different from what I know from other kindergartens. Despite intense work we feel like we were staying at home with the kids, and this is thanks to daylight. We hardly switch on the lamps.

case study
Design: G-Quadrat Architektur GmbH, Photos: Torben Eskerod
Bringing in light into the dark

The investment paid off not only because of the happier kids and parents. A friendly, healthy building also turned out to be an asset in search for the employees. As plenty of kindergartens were built in a short period of time, it became hard to find qualified staff.

A healthy, friendly work environment is a good reason to choose one kindergarten over another. Mundane tasks, like putting children on the potty or changing diapers of the babies, are better here: big openings in the sanitary facilities allow for natural ventilation, and daylight turns what normally is a utility area into a dwelling area.

"The children play where the sun is. We observed that when a drawing desk is in a darker corner, it is used much less."
Bettina Uesbeck, manager of the kindergarten


case study
Design: G-Quadrat Architektur GmbH, Photos: Torben Eskerod
Happy together

Also Mr. Grossheimann and VELUX bring their clients to the house. The strategy to be built very cost efficient and invest in daylight paid off.
Part of the success was due to the intense collaboration between the architect and VELUX, and the fact, that the building was a laboratory for testing daylight solutions.
Last but not least, the spirit of the team played a big role, which Mr. Grossheimann summed up in few simple words: "Many architects build for their own glory only.
I think one has to like the end users and take them seriously, understand their needs and meet them on the eye level. With kids it means to sit with them on the floor and answer all kind of questions" he added, laughing.