Education centre in the “Marszewo” Forest Botanical Garden in Gdynia

In Gdynia, an educational centre was opened in the Forest Botanical Garden ‘Marszewo’. This minimalist building was constructed from wood. Thanks to special technology, the edifice is supposed to be weatherproof and will last for many years. The design of the building was created by the Gierbienis Poklewski studio from Kraków

The educational centre in the Marszewo Forest Botanical Garden in Gdynia was built from wood using CLT technology. This involves cross-gluing the wood so that its strength is similar to steel. In addition, the building has efficient thermal insulation and is fireproof

The plot on which the building was erected is located in a forested area, and in order to visually merge the building with the trees, deep black wood was used. This colour is the result of tanning larch wood. In total, the complex consists of two separate two-storey buildings made of pine and a glazed connecting section. The total area is 400 square metres. Each part will serve different functions. A space has been arranged here for a permanent exhibition and two teaching rooms have been built. It is in the latter that workshops and classes for schoolchildren, senior citizens and others will be organised. An administrative space and an information desk have also been created, where visitors can find out about all the attractions of the botanic garden and learn about the paths, which are spread over an area of 60 hectares

Without doubt, this is an extremely important point on the educational map of our city. Already in 2019, it is in this area that 10,000 children and young people from Gdynia’s schools could benefit by learning in very unusual conditions about elements related to ecology, forestry, nature. Today we are facing a new challenge, because using such an amazing space is a truly extraordinary opportunity to encourage the youngest inhabitants of our city to learn by exploring, touching and practicing. It is so important to activate them in this way, but also to introduce modern forms of knowledge transfer,” says Jakub Ubych, deputy chairman of the Gdynia City Council, who was present at the opening of the new Marszewo centre

Black from the outside, the inside is very bright. The effect has been achieved thanks to CLT’s prefabricated larch wood

Building with wood, the most human-friendly product that grows on its own and is rationally harvested, is much better than glass or concrete, which are unhealthy for the environment and humans and emit carbon dioxide. We promote timber construction, with the technology as it is. The CLT technology in which the building is constructed is the first of its kind in Poland, but it is also the first administrative building constructed in such technology, of which we are extremely proud,” says Bartłomiej Obajtek, Director of the Regional Directorate of State Forests in Gdańsk

When drawing up the construction documentation, we had tests carried out at the Building Research Institute for the individual approval of tanning boards, as they do not function as a product in Poland, nor can they simply be treated for NRO with available means. The choice of this type of façade finish was dictated by the idea that the building should blend in with the existing forest landscape, while at the same time it is not only original, but also a practical solution to protect the façade against weather, UV and insects. We are already noticing that, despite the time since installation, the facades look consistently correct. As with the CLT, this is the first public building to have such a façade,” reads a post on the Facebook profile of the Gierbienis Poklewski studio.

The project’s main contractor, TB Invest, assures that the construction of the new education centre out of wood has left a much smaller carbon footprint than if the edifice had been built out of concrete and steel

As far as the environmental aspect is concerned, this investment certainly carries a smaller carbon footprint due to the technologies used. We do not have a traditional building based on standard materials such as concrete, steel or ceramics of any kind. The main structural elements are wooden, that is, natural. They are not manufactured in big factories, which consume tons of oil, electricity, ” said during the construction of the building Stanisław Kujawski from TB Invest, the company which is the main contractor of the investment

The construction of the new Marszew centre took two years and cost PLN 7 million

photos: Fotomohito

source: UM Gdynia (

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