“Rulantica” aquatic world at Europa Park in Rust

The world of Nordic myths

published in sb 3 2020

By adding the “Rulantica” aquatic adventure world, the leisure park extended its resort to a size equivalent to 63 football pitches. The Nordic theme world is a mix of Scandinavian style, Nordic landscape and mystical settings. The aquatic world was based on the master plan of the architects of PGAV, USA. The plan was studied, optimised and finally implemented by the architects and engineers of pbr AG.

The architectural centrepiece of the aquatic world is a scallop-shaped hall with a height of 20 m and effective space of around 12,000 m², with water accounting for some 3,000 m². The 32,600 m² bathing hall with its ample glazing accommodates nine differently themed areas with 25 water attractions, including 17 slides and a wave pool (the largest in Germany), a Wild River, a Lazy River current channel, several water playgrounds for different age groups, waterfalls, bubble loungers and rest areas. Guests of the “Komfort Hyddas” enjoy an elevated view of the indoor aquatic world. These chalets in exclusive locations serve as private retreats for up to four people.

The 8,000 m² outdoor area features the wild stream by the name of “Vildstrøm”. Both young and old can let themselves be carried along by the heated current. A heated pool with a pool bar open all year round exudes a holiday atmosphere.

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David Franck


Good to know

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David Franck


Rust, Germany

Europa-Park GmbH & Co Mack KG

pbr Planungsbüro Rohling AG
DE - 49076 Osnabrück

Water treatment
aquila wasseraufbereitungstechnik GmbH

pbr, Europa-Park

David Franck
Europapark / M Thoma

Official opening
November 2019

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A challenging roof structure

The roof structure under the 11,000 m² fan-shaped wooden roof responds to the climatic and ­technical constraints of swimming pool construction, while at the same time incorporating structural and design aspects. The bathing hall is generously illuminated, while also being built without columns to ensure that views of the giant projection screen in the centre of the hall can be enjoyed from all areas. The stage equipment required for the shows has been installed on the structure, as have the other technical systems. In order to meet all requirements and to unite the technical, climatic, structural and design features, different structures of steel, solid masonry and also wood were analysed in different directions of stress. The linearly oriented wooden structure finally turned out to be the most suitable.

Ventilation solution
The five 87-metre-long timber box girders contain the huge ventilation ducts that supply the hall interior with fresh air. The ventilation solution allows the supply air to flow in from above and the air to be extracted in the lower part of the hall, so that any pollutants can be efficiently removed from the water surfaces. Dehumidification systems, air exchangers and many other systems have been mounted on the steel columns. In the changing room and catering area alone, ventilation ducts penetrate the waterproofing and insulation levels at around 850 points.

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David Franck


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David Franck

To enhance the building’s desired Nordic ­character, the trusses have been assembled to create ­natural wooden box girders. Constructed from wooden trusses, the folded frame has opaque, acoustically controlled surfaces alternating with glazing on its roof ridges.

For air distribution, a concrete plateau in the heart of the roof area is used, in which a 4 m x 3 m supply air duct as well as an equally large exhaust air duct have been laid in an arc on two levels and connected to the masonry bearings of the trusses.


The span of the trusses is up to 50 m. Five concrete columns arranged in an arc, each with a height of 16 m and a diameter of 1.20 m, discharge this load into separate foundations.

Because of the vast span and the dimensions of the various ventilation ducts, wooden box girders have been constructed to discharge the load from the folded roof system via the concrete plateau and the circular columns in the hall to 4 x 4 m façade towers built of masonry.

Tower cladding reminiscent of rampart towers
The façade towers divide the glazed main façade into five sections, each 33 m wide. They articulate the façade from both the outside and the inside. The façade towers play an important role not only in terms of design, but also technically, as they are also used to extract the exhaust air and transport it via the wooden box girders to the ventilation unit.

The truss structures contain not only the ventilation but also other technical elements. The specially designed gullies are thus also used for roof drainage and the control of the smoke and heat extraction systems and the openable skylights. The hall lighting has also been installed in the truss structures. For maintenance purposes and to permit the flexible installation of event equipment, even at a later date, a maintenance corridor has been provided in each of the main girders, which can be accessed from the concrete plateau.

Innovative technology for resource-conserving operations

The water from the wild stream outside is pumped overnight into an underground tank. Thanks to its excellent insulation, the temperature inside remains constant – on the thermos flask principle. The water can be easily pumped back into the Wild River the following day.

A special filter system ensures that around 80 per cent of the pool’s wastewater can be recycled. Only 20 percent of the daily water requirement is supplied as fresh water. This is pumped from two of the pool’s own deep wells and treated.

The sun-spoiled region of southern Baden
A system of 3,000 solar modules was installed on a carport during the construction of Rulantica indoor aquatic world. This structure covers half of the car park area and thus not only supplies green electricity for internal needs, but also provides shelter for users’ cars. The modern photovoltaic system generates over 1.1 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year. Two combined heat and power plants generating 15.5 million kilowatt hours of electricity annually provide Rulantica with a reliable base-load supply.

To provide for existing animal and plant habitats and protect them in the long term, 2,000 trees, 18,000 wild shrubs and 60,000 flowers have been planted on the site, 158 nest boxes have been put up, a wildlife and bat corridor has been built and a bee pavilion containing eight hives has been established.

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David Franck