(NL) Trippenhuiscomplex

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De Boel

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Datacenter AM4

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Tuin van BRET

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Porcellis (Hoofdkantoor PVH Europe)

Transformation area
The new headquarters of PVH Europe is located in Amsterdam’s Houthaven, a former dock and business park currently undergoing a transformation. Houthaven was built in the nineteenth century as an import and export dock for the international timber trade. After the Second World War, timber was increasingly transported by road, as a result of which Houthaven lost its function and became a business park. Since 2010, Amsterdam City Council has been developing the area into a climate-neutral residential neighbourhood. To this end, seven new islands are being constructed in the IJ. In addition, there are to be buildings with public functions, such as Theater Amsterdam, for example, and the school ‘4e Gymnasium’, both of which were completed in 2014.

A building like a ship
As an eyecatcher, Porcellis marks the furtherst tip of Danzigerkade. The exterior of this office building alludes to the cruise ships and yachts that sail past on the IJ. White aluminium and glass are the dominant materials used. The building cantilevers slightly over the water like the prow of a ship. The canopy, which projects some seven metres towards the water, reinforces this effect. With a height of fifty metres, Porcellis is twice as high as the other buildings on Danzigerkade. The offices and the roof terrace afford a spectacular view over Amsterdam and the dock area.

The building contains, among other things, 13,000 m2 of office space, a café/restaurant, a parking garage and, as PVH Europe is a fashion company with brands such as Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger in its portfolio, a number of showrooms. The interior is transparent and flexible with open floor plans and glass walls. Thanks to the warm wooden accents on the ceilings and walls the interior has a warm ambience, which contrasts with the building’s cool exterior. Because the café/restaurant on the ground floor is open to the public, the building connects with the neighbourhood.

Building 027E Marineterrein Amsterdam

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Raadhuis van Nieuwer-Amstel

The neo-Renaissance building, which was completed in 1892, was contracted out for 92,600 guilders. Critics appealed to the city council to invest more in the Raadhuis, or town hall. The editors of the architecture magazine De Opmerker expressed their doubts regarding the adequacy of the budget: ‘Now it is not yet too late, we believe that the city council should consider not implementing their commendable plan by halves so as not to be faced later with an irreversible fait accompli, whereas with a relatively small increase in costs a town hall can be procured which will attest to future generations the artistic sense of today’s administrators of Nieuweramstel’. They preferred the original, rather lavish design (see second illustration) by the architect Roelof Kuipers, but the council opted for a more sober building for budgetary reasons. For example, the tops of the side elevations were replaced by roof windows and there is less sandstone and fewer sculptures than in the original design.

For all that, it is still a striking building and was admired to the extent that it acquired a lookalike. In 1913 a new town hall opened in Kerkrade, whose exterior architecture was almost entirely based on the building on Amsteldijk.

For almost a century, the building fulfilled an important function for Amsterdam. After having served briefly as a town hall, it was taken into use to house the Gemeentearchief, or municipal archives. Together with the neighbouring former diamond-cutting factory (the monumental Asschergebouw) and six other buildings (now demolished), it housed ‘Amsterdam’s memory’. In 2007, the archives were moved to the building ‘De Bazel’ on Vijzelstraat. Moving the forty kilometres of centuries-old, fragile archives and collections was a huge operation. The Gemeentearchief is now called ‘Stadsarchief’, or Amsterdam city archives.

New build plans
The building on Amsteldijk has lain vacant since 2007. A redevelopment scheme for the building and its grounds is currently underway. The scheme provides for a parking garage, (creative) businesses, housing, a hotel, a theatre and a school. The demolished buildings have freed up space for new build and two new urban squares. The aim is for a multifunctional use of the area, which will be characterized by high quality new build and the authentic aura of the former Raadhhuis and diamond-cutting factory. Once again the future will tell whether the plan attests to the ‘artistic sense of today’s administrators’.
(Max Smit /ARCAM)


REM island has been located in Amsterdam’s Houthavens since 2011. It is known mainly for being the platform in the North Sea from where, for four months in 1964, commercial television was broadcast. Although in the 1950s and 60s many were in favour of authorizing commercial broadcasting companies, the Broadcasting Act allowed only six non-commercial companies. A number of individuals therefore decided to position a platform, called REM island, in the North Sea, just outside Dutch territorial waters, from where they commenced broadcasting on 15 August 1964. For four months, households were able to receive television programmes from this platform, until the law was changed, bringing the transmissions to an end. The state department of roads and waterways subsequently used the platform as a measuring station.

When in 2006 the platform was threatened with demolition, it attracted the attention of Nick van Loon and Hilly Engels who saw its potential as a restaurant. Together with the housing association De Key and the design office Concrete, the platform was converted to its new use.
Concrete’s transformation was in the spirit of the original design: all additions, including an extra storey, a ventilation system and a large lift shaft, were purely functional. In 2011, after a three-year renovation and transformation, REM island began its journey from Delfzijl to Amsterdam, arriving at Haparandadam 36 hours later.


Multifunctional complex
IJdock is situated on an artificial peninsula in the IJ, to the west of Amsterdam’s main railway station Centraal Station. This multifunctional complex is the final piece in the development along the Southern IJ Waterfront. A huge number of facilities had to be slotted into an area of land measuring 60 metres wide by 180 metres long: offices, a hotel, apartments, a marina, an office for the river police and the Palace of Justice.

Master plan
Bjarne Mastenbroek and Dick van Gameren designed the master plan, which is based on openings in the building volume, thereby creating sight lines from the city’s ring of canals to the IJ. As a result, there is now a view through from Bickerseiland, between the building volumes in Westerdok and IJdok, to Overhoeks Tower in Amsterdam Noord. Most striking of all is the large V-shaped opening in the side of the building. This so-called ‘Keizersgrachtsnede’ is precisely aligned with Keizersgracht and thus establishes a connection with the old ring of canals.

Cruise ships
The complex comprises five sections and has a height of 44 metres. The Palace of Justice, situated on the easternmost point, consists of two sections: a section with the offices of the Public Prosecution Service and a section containing the courthouse and the courtrooms. An elevated walkway connects the two sections. The building’s white colour and its numerous small windows allude to the many cruise ships that sail past here in the high season, thereby giving additional emphasis to the link with the IJ. The hotel is a completely transparent building with glass elevations and has 300 rooms. It stands on an extremely narrow – not more than fifteen metres wide – strip of land.
The apartments are open on the water side and closed on the street side. Here, the elevation is provided with oriels, balconies, glazed fronts, windows and doors, giving rise to a playful appearance.

Living Tomorrow

The futuristic pavilion ‘Living Tomorrow Amsterdam’ (2003), designed by the architectural office UNStudio, is also called ‘Huis van de Toekomst’ (‘house of tomorrow’) and its nickname is ‘kruimeldief’ (‘dustbuster’). It was originally intended as a temporary building that would be demolished after five years. It is still standing, however, and currently houses the music events organiser ID&T.

Innovation platform
Living Tomorrow, the client who commissioned the pavilion of the same name, is an organization with various projects relating to living and dwelling in the future. It was set up in Belgium in 1991 when Brussels became capital of Europe. The innovation platform showcases the cutting-edge products and services of various companies and organizations, creating a vision of living and working in the future.

The first Huis van de Toekomst opened in 1995 in Vilvoorde (Belgium). It was a huge public success. In 2003, Living Tomorrow opened a similar concept in Amsterdam, designed by UNStudio. The building in Zuidoost, close to the ArenA and Heineken Music Hall, comprises two convex volumes, one vertical, the other horizontal. The verticality symbolizes the building’s future programme. The volumes are clad with profiled aluminium sheets and have large windows. Originally, the ground floor housed the entrance, an auditorium, events hall, exhibition space and offices. On the four floors above were exhibition spaces, a restaurant and other ancillary facilities. On view in the pavilion were various home automation, or domotica, devices – among other things, a mirror showing the latest news and traffic information, a refrigerator that registered its own contents and then ordered the shopping, as well as other technical innovations.

Temporary or permanent?
Living Tomorrow Amsterdam was built as a temporary building. It was to showcase the most advanced home automation appliances designed by the investment companies HP, Unilever and Philips, among others. After five years the Huis van de Toekomst would be outdated and so would be demolished. However, following the departure of Living Tomorrow in 2008, the pavilion lay vacant for some time and there was talk of bringing it back into use. The city council wanted to retain a hold on the area and so purchased the pavilion for some seven million euros. It is currently leased to the music events organizer ID&T. In 2015, ID&T are to relocate to the A’DAM Tower (the former Shell Tower in Overhoeks, next to EYE), which is to become a 24-hour music hub. The future plans for Living Tomorrow have yet to be announced.


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3D Print Canal House

The 3D Print Canal House is a three year publically accessible ‘Research & Design by Doing’ project in which an international team of partners from various sectors works together on 3D printing a canal house in Amsterdam. A beta-preneurial building project, which has the goal to revolutionize the building industry and offer new tailor made housing solutions worldwide.

The building and the research happen on a publically accessible building site and expo; the site also functions as an innovation platform. We offer a variety of custom made programs, including presentations, personal tours and workshops.

For reservations and costs, please contact info@3dprintcanalhouse.com.

Amsterdam Marina

The Amsterdam Marina is situated in the widest section of the IJ and was designed by the Amsterdam architectural office SeARCH architects. It was completed in 2013 and underlines the historic maritime character of the NDSM shipyard.

The Havengebouw (harbour master’s office) houses the headquarters of the HISWA, well known for its annual boat show ‘HISWA te Water’ and the boat show in the RAI. The HISWA wanted its headquarters to be close to these events and therefore chose a location in Amsterdam. Amsterdam City Council envisaged an eye-catching, high-quality building as part of the revitalization of the Northern IJ Waterfront.

The entire complex is built above water and is an extension of the existing yard. A characteristic element is the structure comprising curved wooden ribs, which creates a sheltered promenade. The eighteen, 12.5 metre high parabolic laminated wooden ribs give the building an open and airy character. These ribs support the structure and moreover create a subtle transition between the building and the harbour. The promenade enables visitors to walk around the outside of the building. The marina has 350 berths for pleasure craft, with additional moorings around the restaurant ‘Loetje’ where restaurant guests can moor their boats.

2600 m2
With a total floor area of 2600 m2, the Havengebouw houses a range of facilities. The HISWA is located on the top floor of the building, from where staff members have a stunning view over the IJ towards Amsterdam’s historic centre. The abundant use of glass contributes to the building’s transparent character. The building also contains offices and various facilities for the marina. On the ground floor are the harbour office and the restaurant Loetje with its spacious outdoor seating area. (ARCAM/ GB)


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