IJburg College is a high school with more than 1000 students. The school is located next to the Theo van Gogh park on the Haveneiland in IJburg. The students are free to use the park without supervision, and also make use of a sheltered square which is half-hidden in a building complex.

Schoolyards in a city create space. The yard is open to the public; it was not only designed for the students of IJburg College, but expressly for IJburg, the neighbourhood in which the school is a part. The school’s secondary entrance opens onto the yard, but so do the neighbouring residences. Three fully-grown trees are the beacons of the yard, and they are surrounded by “henkies” of varying sizes. A “henk” is a cement cylinder that you can sit, hang or climb on. You can also do nothing with them, in which case they become an abstract landscape scattered around the three trees. The square is black asphalt, and the “henks” are made of concrete with a visible, white gravel surface. The fences surrounding the trees are a nod to the striking, wave-like railings of adjoining apartment building. White dots have been painted, like shadows, around the “henks” with Thermoplast, the same paint used to mark pedestrian crossings.

90 Meter long square
Client - Ymere; Status - Completion 2012; Photography - Stefan Muller; Google Maps