The holistic approach to the design of the Nuremberg educational institution, which was officially opened in June 2022, is based on the simple motto “As outside, so inside” and combines architecture and interior design to an impressive overall ensemble. As an English nun in the 16th century, Maria Ward, who gave the building its name, knew to implement this philosophy with her open, honest and clear attitude in her visionary life’s work. With the new extension of the state-recognised private school, the Archdiocese of Bamberg realises innovative pedagogical learning and interior concepts and offers an excellent learning environment for 1,200 pupils. Clear lines and six-metre-long windows characterise the compact building structure. Shredded clinker bricks from the former school were used in the façade. Vertical brass-clad bars in the auditorium bring fresh air from the roof into the building. The initials of the school’s name-giver embellish the entrance doors, steps and brass claddings inside the hypermodern complex, which combines primary school, secondary school and grammar school with a multiple sports hall and accessible green roof terraces.
The centrepiece of the atrium is the custom-made connecting staircase in elliptical shape, which serves as main staircase linking three floors and combining the highest level of craftsmanship with ambitious design and special creative features. Despite the immense amount of steel used, the spiral staircase has a filigree appearance and blends homogeneously into the clear, light-flooded architecture of the building. An oval steel landing visually and functionally complements the foot of the spiral staircase. MetallArt constructed transparent, parapet-high all-glass railings for the three upper floors. By means of complex 3D construction planning with freely selectable views, the spiral staircase was previously visualised in close cooperation with all project partners and adapted to the innovative overall architectural concept.