Primary school „Miroslav Krleža“ is the oldest school in Zagreb. Because of the year of its construction as well as its specific characteristics, this school belongs to the historical urban complex of the Town of Zagreb and is part of the town’s cultural heritage. Its first academic year was as early as in 1877/1878. As the oldest school in the town of Zagreb, it lived through two earthquakes – the first took place on 9 November 1880 and the recent one on 22 March 2020.
The earthquake that hit Zagreb on 22 March 2020 caused serious damage to the school building. Structural analysis of the facility concluded that the school was unusable due to the load-bearing wall structural damage and the risk of collapse. The damage caused by the earthquake was the result of the age of the material that, in the course of all those years, lost its load-bearing and binding properties. Also, the ceilings, made of wooden beams, were not adequately connected to the building’s vertical structure.
The repair of the damage caused by the earthquake began in autumn of 2020. Because of severe damage and due to the fact that the 143-year-old school represented cultural heritage, it was decided that the building should undergo reconstruction. The reconstruction planned for structural reinforcement that would, in addition to improved material resistance, also provide for the desired behaviour and response during future earthquake activities. This primarily refers to the construction of new reinforced-concrete slabs that would connect the ceilings and walls as well as to the reinforcement of walls with shotcrete or polymer fibre reinforced shotcrete. Because of the placement of new materials, the foundations would also have to be reinforced in order to provide for their ability to take over the additional weight resulting from newly placed elements.
The task of stabilizing and repairing the south wall, which deflected from its original axis across three storeys, will be particularly interesting and challenging by itself due to the method of execution and also due to the fact that possible approach to the primary school „Miroslav Krleža“ building, since the school is situated in the very centre of the town, allows for little manipulation space for work and site organization. The basic plan was to repair the structure of the building. However, the reconstruction design also envisages a number of changes within the existing school in order to bring the building itself in line with applicable laws and regulations, particularly those regulating fire protection and safety at work. All work to be carried out inside the facility and on its front side will be in line with the requirements of the Zagreb Institute for the Protection of Cultural and Natural Heritage. The planned work also includes modification of the floor plan arrangement in order to provide for the modern school standards and to include conditions for the disabled as well. This is the reason why a lift will be installed to connect the ground floor with the first and second storey. The additional work also includes the complete repair of the building’s façade, replacement of external joinery, new installation distribution and complete school courtyard renovation.
Repair and Reconstruction of the Primary School „Miroslav Krleža“