SOS Children’s village Medlánky
Brno, Czech Republic, 2002 – 2004
An SOS children’s village designed according to low-energy principles was constructed in the district of Medlánky in Brno, Czech Republic.
The assignment on the part of the non-profit organization SOS Children’s Villages International comprised the construction of ten family homes and one administration building, as well as the conversion of two existing single-family units. The planned outdoor facilities include a hard-top sports ground, a soft-top playground, pathways and lawns.
The principal idea was to design the children’s village in such a way – while keeping planning and construction costs constant – as to clearly reduce its energy consumption and make it largely independent of energy suppliers. This is achieved by the project’s low-energy design. The houses all have a southward orientation to maximize solar gains, and sufficient shading to prevent overheating. The building shells are equipped with high-grade insulation; the windows in insulation glazing are mounted airtight.
Within the buildings, unhindered heat circulation is ensured, and the supporting walls are utilized to store heat. Furthermore, the entire compound is equipped with a solar system for heating and hot water preparation. In addition, separate ducts for used water and waste water permit the use of used water for irrigating the outdoor facilities.
In terms of its outward appearance, the children’s village presents itself as a differentiated, yet harmonious entity. The southern facades are designed in bright, friendly colors, with a white or beige plaster finish and light green blinds. The wood siding of the buildings is kept in different shades of warm oak tones. The buildings are differentiated in particular by means of the doors and door bays, each in a strong, individual color, not least to facilitate orientation for the children.
Due to its advanced low-energy design, the project serves as a future-oriented model for the construction of family homes in Central and Eastern Europe. The project’s exemplary character is also witnessed by its inclusion in the Czech-Austrian Energy Partnership.
SOS Children’s Villages International is an umbrella organisation which supports children’s villages, youth facilities, kindergartens, schools, vocational training centers, social centers, medical centers and emergency relief programmes in 131 countries and territories worldwide. If you would like to support this or other projects, please visit the Website: www.sos-childrensvillages.org