IKC de Zuidstroom

The Integraal Kind Centrum de Zuidstroom (De Zuidstroom primary school) which opened in 2015, was designed and built entirely according to cradle to cradle (C2C) principles. The ambition of the client, Fortior, was not only to realise a circular and healthy school building; but also to approach the construction as a learning tool in the field of circular economy. The pupils are consequently regarded as ambassadors of the future and have circular philosophy firmly embedded in their DNA.

Research has revealed that the average school building in the Netherlands is 38 years old, does not comply with the basic principles of educational institutions, and a staggering 80% (!) do not meet air quality target standards.
The De Zuidstroom distinguishes itself by providing a pleasant, healthy and safe learning and working environment for children, teachers and local residents alike.

The ambitions

An important starting point for the design of the De Zuidstroom primary school was the creation of healthy indoor air (Frisse Scholen – literally ‘fresh schools’), the generation of renewable energy and the utilisation of safe and healthy materials.

The school building was additionally designed in such a way that its classrooms can be used in a flexible manner and outside of school hours. The Cradle to Cradle-inspired school building also performs an important pivotal function in the local area.

Business Case explanation

The school building was designed and built according to the Total Cost of Ownership approach, and its C2C ambitions were realised within the allocated budget. Fortior’s operating costs, such as energy use, are also considerably lower than in traditional school buildings.

Effects on health and productivity were not included in the financial business case. However, both teachers and children alike are positive about the indoor climate.