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School buildings in motion

Municipal Education Antwerp works on quality school modules

The growing and rejuvenating Antwerp population has created a great need for additional school places in recent years. By expanding schools - temporarily or otherwise - and/or building new schools, the capacity was increased significantly. But Antwerp's population continues to grow strongly, so that the shortage of space at various locations remains.

The way in which temporary classrooms are currently provided is an expensive and not very sustainable solution.
The initial cost price prevails. A temporary container class is a quick and inexpensive solution, but rental costs are high and the quality of the modules already installed is not designed for long-term use.

Municipal Education Antwerp wants to develop an alternative for this: school modules that meet the same criteria as a newly built school but are movable. These modules could have several lives before being incorporated in a permanent school. Moreover, the modules must be designed in such a way that they can also be used for other functions.

In order to give shape to these modules, the Antwerp City Education Department is investigating 3 areas:
- Didactic vision of the future
The vision of what didactics should look like within a school is constantly evolving and is driven by social changes. Today there is an increased interest in broad schools where larger classes or spaces are desired. Architecturally, these buildings cannot be compared with the classic circuits within a school consisting of corridors through which classrooms give out.

- Techno-economic
Because the Antwerp City Education aims to achieve the same quality for the temporary accommodation as a new building, the investment value for the new modules will, by definition, be higher than the known container classrooms. The solution, however, lies in the higher residual value of the modules, which means that they can be used in another temporary school or incorporated in a new school without any modifications.

- Legal issues
It is not easy to organize innovative projects between a public and a private party given the current legislation on public procurement.

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