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Bolles + Wilson unveils Kindergarten church conversion

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[FIRST LOOK + PLANS] Bolles + Wilson has converted a 1960s church in Munster, Germany, into a child care centre

Originally built in 1962, the St Sebastian church was deconsecrated in the 2000s and has now been re-opened as a kindergarten.

A two-storey building has been inserted into the nave of the elliptical church with three group rooms on the ground floor and two further rooms on the first floor.

An all-weather play deck sits on top of this building-within-a-building. Glazing from the grid of 50 x 50 cm openings that used to perforate the church’s original facade has been removed. The naturally ventilated playspace is now lit by industrial skylights in the new roof.


An extension next to the kindergarten’s glazed entrance contains a kitchen, offices, technical rooms and one big multipurpose room.

External play spaces include a bobby-car circuit and a play house which doubles as second escape route from the inner play decks.

The second phase of development at the church will see housing built around the site’s perimeter.


The original church. Photography by Ahlbrand Dornseif Wakonigg

Project data

Competition 2009, 1st prize
Planning October 2010 – August 2012
Start on site September 2011
Completion January 2013
Gross floor area 1,120 m2   
Costs €3,000,000
Client Wohn+Stadtbau GmbH
Structural engineers ahw Ingenieure
Service engineers Ingenieurbüro Nordhorn
Fire protection W+W Sachverständige and Ingenieure für Brandschutz
Daylight simulation Peter Andres – Beratende Ingenieure für Lichtplanung Brandschutz

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