In order to meet the growing needs of its training center for future cadets, a new service building is currently being built for the police in Eichstätt. Its design takes advantage of the beautiful location in the Altmühl Valley and introduces a new focal point to the existing ensemble of classrooms and training areas, workshops, sports facilities, accommodations, and administrative buildings.
The three-part building, each section rising to different heights, makes skillful use of the existing sloping site to create two floors, each of which can be accessed from ground level. The free forms of the foyer and canteen on the upper level are arranged around the rectangular kitchen facilities located up the slope, whereas the service areas on the lower level are embedded into the topography. The edges of the building guide visitors toward the entrances and allow new outdoor areas to emerge. It all means that the new building adds exciting new accents to the existing complex.
The heart of the new building is the south-facing canteen on the upper level with seating for approximately 330 people. It offers employees and trainees a wide, all-round view of the Altmühl Valley, which enables diners to feel they are sitting outdoors, regardless of the time of year. This effect is ensured by the well-designed interplay of transparent and opaque elements combined with fixed outdoor lamellae providing protection from the sun. This heat-protection system was meticulously simulated on a computer, and the resulting optimal positioning of the closed panels ensures that no mobile sunscreens are necessary. The ceilings of the foyer and canteen are separated from the kitchen building by bands of light, reinforcing the impression that they are floating and ensuring that plenty of daylight makes its way into the large room, even from the north.
The canteen’s cantilevered terrace adds additional emphasis to the building’s horizontal structuring. It emerges from the courtyard and surrounds the dining area much like an extended contour line. Part of the lower level beneath is integrated into the slope, connecting optically with the landscaped outdoor stairs. This is where the delivery area, storerooms, and changing rooms can be found, as well as all the technical building services. The arrangement ensures a separation of user flows, thereby establishing the ideal conditions for implementing the “Clean-Separate-Cook-Chill” approach (HACCP – Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) to food safety, which is necessary when operating a large-scale kitchen.
The photovoltaic roofs atop the foyer and canteen are optimized to ensure maximum yield thanks to their form and angle of inclination toward the sun. Seeding various herbs and other plants on the kitchen’s biodiverse roof provides both a living space and a food source for bees and insects. A greened brick facade is planned for the kitchen wing to mesh with its strict geometry. The construction technique follows a resource-efficient approach that is customized to suit the purpose: a hybrid steel-and-wood structure to span the considerable width of the canteen and recycled concrete for parts of the building in contact with the earth as well as for the kitchen area.