Hey, teachers…

European School Copenhagen

by Nord Architects & Vilhelm Lauritzen Arkitekter

Vibrant spaces

The new Euro­pean School Copen­hagen adds vibrant spaces to the historic brewery site “Carls­berg City” in Copen­hagen.

Tucked between Copenhagen’s historic Carls­berg buil­dings a new public school recently opened for around 900 students with inter­na­tional back­ground. Desi­gned by NORD Archi­tects and Vilhelm Lauritzen Archi­tects, the Euro­pean School Copen­hagen is a new inter­na­tional school that promotes modern lear­ning land­scapes whilst merging school and city toge­ther through open public spaces.


Nord Archi­tects
Hejrevej 37, 2
DK — 2400 Køben­havn NV

Vilhelm Lauritzen Arki­tekter
Pakhus 48, Sundkaj 9, 1.tv.
DK – 2150 Nord­havn


Free of charge

The Euro­pean School Copen­hagen is the first public inter­na­tional school in Denmark. The school offers a multi­cul­tural and multi­l­in­gual educa­tion for the 900 students atten­ding nursery, primary and secon­dary school. Ever­yone can seek admis­sion. The school is part of the Danish welfare system and free of charge.

The school is financed by the City of Copen­hagen, Reald­ania, the Novo Nordisk Foun­da­tion, the Nordea Fund and the Industry Fund.


Engi­neer: EKJ Engi­neers
General contractor: BAM Danmark


Multicultural reach

The Euro­pean School Copen­hagen has a multi­cul­tural reach supported by the city of Copen­hagen and distin­gu­ished Danish inter­na­tional compa­nies. The inter­na­tional perspec­tive of the school is embedded in the local district of Carls­berg City with several archi­tec­tural land­marks and a long history of indus­trial brewery site.


Euro­pean School Copen­hagen
Ny Carls­berg Vej 99
DK — 1799 Køben­havn

Aerial view

Storytelling architecture

The historic surroun­dings set the outline of the new school between the exis­ting buil­ding mass at Carls­berg. The site is an attrac­tive neigh­bour­hood with outstan­ding and storytel­ling archi­tec­ture founded in specific func­tions – and reflec­ting a fasci­na­tion of deco­ra­tive brick­work.

The Euro­pean School Copen­hagen is inte­grated in the living history of indus­trial archi­tec­ture and era charac­te­rized by entre­pre­neur­ship and chal­len­ging vision under­pinned by science and educa­tion. The new school builds upon this tradi­tion and cultural heri­tage — unfolded as a new inter­pre­ta­tion in its own time.


12 + 9 =

Everyone is welcome

NORD Archi­tects and Vilhelm Lauritzen Archi­tects won the compe­ti­tion in 2015 in team with the cons­tructor BAM Denmark and EKJ Engi­neers.

With respect to the historic surroun­dings, the archi­tects have maxi­mised school space and created an open, modern and vibrant lear­ning envi­ron­ment – not only for the students. Ever­yone is welcome to use the school grounds. It was crucial to the archi­tects to create a func­tio­ning school that simul­ta­neously inter­acts with the area and this extra­or­di­nary historic site.





Nord Archi­tects

Social interaction

The school’s lear­ning spaces are centered around two major lear­ning stairs that run verti­cally through the five floors and unite all classes and age gaps.

The lear­ning stairs are multi­func­tional recrea­tional spaces as well as teaching areas for larger or smaller groups of students. They also provide visual contact and cohe­rence between the diffe­rent zones and spaces across the classes, high­lighting the canteen as a central and social gathe­ring place.


Sports hall

The Euro­pean School Copen­hagen is inte­grated into Carls­berg City as part of a new urban land­scape without bold borders between school and city. The sports hall is part of this inter­me­diate zone which is connected to the roof land­scape that rises in diffe­rent levels with recrea­tional spaces, acti­vi­ties and play­grounds.

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Win win

The rela­tion between the insti­tu­tion and the city becomes a ‘win win-situa­tion’ where spaces, func­tions and square meters are shared, thus crea­ting a social sustainable utili­sa­tion of valuable urban areas.

In addi­tion, there is the symbiosis of a modern pedago­gical concept and an equally open archi­tec­ture, which skilfully orien­tates itself towards the exis­ting archi­tec­tural tradi­tions, without chum­ming up.

“Hey, teachers, leave them kids alone” Pink Floyd once protested against outdated and autho­ri­ta­rian educa­tional systems. Other songs are probably sung at the Euro­pean School in Copen­hagen — but singing is defi­ni­tely here.




About us

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Johannes Bühlbecker, founder

Johannes Bühl­be­cker is an archi­tect and has worked, among others, for Inter­na­tional Asso­cia­tion for Sports and Leisure Faci­li­ties (IAKS) for 15 years – as edito­rial director of the renowned trade maga­zine “sb”, in the orga­ni­sa­tion and reali­sa­tion of inter­na­tional archi­tec­tural compe­ti­tions with IOC and IPC, in trade fairs and conven­tions, as head of the “NRW Bera­tungs­stelle Sport­stätten“ (“NRW Advice Centre for Sports Faci­li­ties”) and as a lecturer at the German Sport Univer­sity Cologne.

  • Dipl.-Ing. (engi­nee­ring degree) Archi­tect, TU Berlin
  • Long­time edito­rial head with “sb”, an inter­na­tional journal for the archi­tec­ture of sports
  • Trai­ning in web design, online marke­ting, etc.
  • Inter­na­tional archi­tec­tural compe­ti­tions with IOC and IPC
  • Trade fair and congress orga­ni­sa­tion
  • Head of the “NRW Bera­tungs­stelle Sport­stätten“ (“NRW Advice Centre for Sports Venues”)
  • Lecturer at the German Sport Univer­sity Cologne
  • Plan­ning of the Prus­sian Stadium in Münster (for groß­mann engi­neers, Göttingen)
  • Replan­ning a foot­ball stadium in Berlin-Köpe­nick
  • Nume­rous publi­ca­tions, i.a. “From Round Leather to Soap Bubbles – The Deve­lo­p­ment of Foot­ball and its Archi­tec­ture”
  • Board member and youth coach at SV BW Weitmar 09



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