DAAD Architecten has designed a new sheepfold, with a pitched barn and wool studio, in Balloo in Drenthe. The site, which was ruined through a fire, on the edge of the Balloo es [heightened plots of farmland, specific to Drenthe], has been developed into a public, central green, with spaces for education, information and art.
Yard as lounge The sheepfold’s shepherds combine tending their flocks with a wide range of ancillary activities on and around the yard. In the old situation the sheepfold stood at the centre of it. Starting point for the rebuild was a landscaping approach for the entire site, with as a focus the green as spatial carrier that enhanced the relationship with the environment. DAAD designed two barns, which, through their new positioning, enclose a central core, which forms the public ‘lounge’ of the sheepfold. Various special sightlines have been created from the yard towards the Balloo field, the adjoining es and Balloo village.
The sheepfold and its annexes are oriented towards the centre of the yard. Various overhangs, or in-between spaces can both be connected to the outdoor space, or to the interior spaces, for, for instance, weaving and selling wool, courses or presentations. The sheepfold was given an open façade towards the yard, allowing visitors a view onto the sheep from the outside. The products of the wool studio are displayed on the facades of the other buildings. In a second phase, the building of a staff residence will complement the current buildings. Patchwork elevation
The construction methods and materials used for the new sheepfold and the other sturctures build on traditional local characteristics. The sheepfold consists of a construction of wooden trusses, with a thatched roof. Contemporary solutions add new layers to the design’s shapes and details. Inspired by Drenthe’s farmers who built and mended their stables with any piece of wood at hand, the facades have been designed in a patchwork of black, weather-boarded planks, going in different directions, alternated with horizontal, wooden slats letting in light and ventilation.