Thor Heyerdal College

With its 27,000m2, its 1650 students and 300 staff, the Thor Heyerdahl College (THC) is one of the largest sixth form colleges in Norway. Aside from the rooms for service industry subjects, communications subjects, trades and general subjects, the school integrates an ultra-flexible sports arena. The new THC clusters the school’s various elements in a compact and vertically oriented building. The main structure comprises an open square plate that has deep, cut-out openings in it, which both create a dynamic and allow natural light to penetrate deep into the building.

A corresponding plate above it is turned 180 degrees on the building’s axis. This gives rise to a series of single and double-height areas which accommodate academic subjects, workshop activities and communal facilities. The rotational effect and mutually displaced plate edges create outdoor terraces, while on the inside providing visual connections between floors. Viewed from the outside, the incisions give the building direction and a distinctive, dynamic form, with four axes that each point out into the context and embrace it. Both exterior and interior furnishing is in design, colour and functionality collaborating with the overall architectural idea and vision for a modern educational setting, where play and seriousity are equal important elements.