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Expansion of the Berlin Metropolitan School 

LIGNO® Akustik light provides good sound in Berlin's oldest international school

The Berlin Metropolitan School (BMS) is the oldest international school in the centre of the capital. It uses an existing building that was constructed in 1987 as an industrially prefabricated reinforced concrete system building. In order to better implement the modern teaching concept and to accommodate the newly designed three-form upper school, an extension of the school was necessary. The internationally active Berlin architects Sauerbruch Hutton used the roof area of the prefabricated building for a wooden extension - in the spirit of urban densification that conserves land resources. They also added a new building to the side that spans several storeys. In the interior, LIGNO® Akustik light acoustic panels ensure pleasant quietness and good speech intelligibility. The successful project was awarded the 2021 German Timber Construction Prize in the category "Building in Existing Contexts".

The construction measures could be carried out in phases and without interrupting the school, the decisive factor being the prefabrication possible in timber construction. On the outside, the extension and the annex were clad in copper, while the sustainable building material was to be visible on the inside: The ceiling soffits were covered with very finely profiled acoustic panels LIGNO ® Akustik light acoustic panels made of silver fir. In addition to good room sound, they promote a healthy indoor climate. Finished with a whitish translucent varnish, they give the rooms a very modern and fresh appearance in a discreet way.

The library and the sculpturally shaped auditorium, in which the primary wooden structure dominates, are particularly impressive. The acoustic panels recede into the background between the trusses, concealing ventilation and technical elements and creating a pleasant quality of quiet and good speech intelligibility in the high two-storey room volume.

Configuration overview

Components used

  • LIGNO® Acoustic light   | Ceiling cladding

    Product code: LIGNO® Acoustic light 3S_33_a70g_625-12-4_WTL_gs_bl-w20
    Wood type

    Various wood species are available for the visible layer. For quality reasons, individual wood species cannot be configured for all profiles; for technical reasons, surface treatments are excluded for some wood species.

    Wood type

    _WTL Silver fir knotless, patterned


    The visible layer is profiled with joints. The code for profiling indicates in millimetres: Element width, strip width (rounded, from/to if applicable) and joint width (rounded) as well as a letter identification for variants, e.g. with chamfered strip edges or with additional height gradation.


    Note: Some profiles indirectly cause exclusions for other configuration options.


    _625-12-4 Slat profile


    The face is subjected to a brushing _gb as standard, which produces a stronger or weaker structure depending on the type of wood and makes the surface less sensitive to scratches.  Alternatively, a smooth sanding _gs can be carried out, or on request a bandsaw cut _grimitated.


    _gs Sanded


    Depending on the type of wood, the optional application of a surface treatment is possible ex works. Individual colour finishes are always sampled for coordination. For elements in individual lengths, colour treatment is limited to max. 5 m length.


    _bl-w20 Lacquer white

    Room acoustics

    If the soffit of the element is to have a good sound-absorbing effect, the penultimate layer is configured as absorber _a50g. Otherwise, this layer is configured as a solid wood layer _a0.

    Room acoustics

    _a70g 70 % Absorber



Project participants

  • Sauerbruch Hutton


    Lehrter Strasse  57
    10557 Berlin

  • Lindner Group SE


    Bahnhofstrasse 29
    94424 Arnstorf

  • Jan Bitter Fotografie


    Neugarder Str. 43
    10409 Berlin


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