When the pollutant survey for a neighbourhood daycare centre on the banks of Brentano Lake in Darmstadt, Germany indicated the existing side building was in need of replacement, it created an opportunity to reimagine the programming for the main building to create a space that would best promote synergy.

Project Essentials

  • LocationDarmstadt, Germany
  • Client"Stadt Darmstadt Eigenbetrieb Immobilienmanagement"
  • Architectprosa architekten
  • Size3,100 ft² (290 m²)
  • Budget0,5 Mio. EUR netto, Kgr. 300 + 400

The deficient building was removed and replaced by a new ground level timber building, with an L-shaped design that allowed its users to run two full-time childcare programs side by side, accommodating up to 40 kids.

Close coordination between architects and Fast + Epp structural engineers ensured fast and cost-effective construction. The project also included a wood-and-steel bridge, which spans a large exterior sandpit and connects the two buildings.


The building’s exterior is clad with a vertical larch wood panelling and accented with a pop of green to highlight the daycare entrance. Square windows offer light and views to a park, enhancing users’ connection to the outdoors. A hallway is not simply a means of passage but another creative space for games and meetings – each end leaves to two large group rooms, which convey a warm, natural atmosphere through the extensive use of wood.