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Loimer Dental Practice

Year 2024

Category economy

Location Maria Saal

Photos Kurt Kuball



The mighty pillar barn with brick windows is the relic of a former farmstead and is located in the center of the market town of Maria Saal with a view of the town‘s landmark St. Mary‘s Cathedral. Built around 1900, this barn belongs to the type of agricultural buildings with brick lattices, which are a special feature of folk architecture in the Alps-Adriatic region.

„Brick lattices“ are masonry elements that usually have small openings above and next to each other, which are created by the special way in which the brick elements are arranged. 

The brick grids made of bricks set with mortar performed practical and design functions. They ensured natural ventilation of the stored goods, served as rain protection, provided sufficient diffuse lighting inside, formed a spatial closure and protected against burglary.

In addition to these technical functions, many brick grilles also served as protection against unwanted magical forces through their design and choice of motif. 



The static structure on the ground floor consists of load-bearing wall elements, above which chords and vaults form the ceiling. The upper floor is a room without walls or columns. On the brick pillars, which are interrupted by the brick windows, a mighty wooden roof truss develops with a roof pitch of approx. 45° as a crippled hipped roof. 

alte Postkartenansicht Maria Saal mit dem Skreinigstadel im Vordergrund

Fig. 1
old postcard view of Maria Saal with the rebuilt barn in the foreground


The building task was to accommodate a dental practice in the existing barn. Respectful and sensitive treatment of the existing building and making the essence of the building visible and tangible were the guiding principles of the design.

Fig. 2
longitudinal and cross-section

In order to provide barrier-free access from the street, a vaulted area was removed and a staircase and an elevator made of exposed concrete were implemented. On the upper floor, a timber construction was used to create an interior space separate from the exterior façade, which houses the dental practice rooms.

 The interior was consistently glazed in the areas of the barn windows. Additional overhead glazing was introduced in the stairwell and waiting room areas. The barn windows and roof construction can be seen and experienced.


The entry way, technical and storage rooms are located on the ground floor. The surgery, consisting of reception, waiting area, surgery rooms, staff lounges and sanitary facilities, was organized on one level on the upper floor. If necessary, the elevator and staircase can be extended upwards and additional space created on the top floor.

Zahnarzt Dr. Loimer Maria Saal, Treppenhaus, Dachunteransicht

Fig. 3
View of the stairwell with overhead glazing; transparent tiles were used in the existing roof truss to bring natural daylight into the room

Fig. 4

ground floor plan, upper floor


The color concept supports the architectural concept of generating material-reduced, flowing and calm spaces. The colors chosen are based on the exterior color of the existing building. No clear, hard white, but a creamy shade that covers the floor, walls and ceilings, creating a continuous, homogeneous interior that is peeled from the existing building. The reduced color scheme calms the space and reinforces the tension between the new interior and the existing exterior. The reduced interior reinforces the elements of the pillared barn that are visible inside: the red bricks of the barn windows, the timber construction of the towering roof structure, the space between old and new. 

The wooden windows made of light oiled spruce correspond well with the light oiled oak, which was also used for the main furniture elements such as the reception desk and room divider. 

Colorful accents were created with the seating furniture. Great attention was paid to the possible multiple use of the seating furniture. Meetings, lectures, events, etc. can also be held in the waiting room by simply moving the furniture.

The atmosphere of the room has a calming effect. The various visual references to the old building arouse curiosity.

Fig. 6
first floor before and after the renovation