Leeuwenhoekcluster (‘t Oliphantspad)

Swammerdamstraat, Leeuwenhoekstraat, Eerste Boerhaavestraat
Erna van Sambeek, René van Veen, Daniël Peters
Van Sambeek & van Veen Architecten
De Principaal BV
De Principaal BV
Ursem Bouwgroep bv
Tram 16 halte Stadhouderskade / Ferdinand Bolstraat

Downstairs/upstairs dwellings

In the eighteenth century, what is now Eerste Boerhaavestraat used to be called Oliphantspad, where wealthy Amsterdammers had their country retreats. In the late nineteenth century, the construction company ‘De IJsbreker’ was granted permission to build housing in this rural area.

A number of these buildings have now been renovated and in three different locations Van Sambeek & Van Veen Architects have realized a total of eighteen new town houses, which together, in the words of the architects, form a small ‘guerilla’ in order to make this late nineteenth-century neighbourhood suitable for the future. The concept is based on an existing typology in this area: the stacking of a ground floor and an upstairs dwelling, each with its own front door on the street.

Next to the front door of the ground-floor dwelling is a large glass frontage set in a bluestone frame. Each of the three storeys above this have, in keeping with the neighbouring buildings, three tall equally spaced windows, and the facades are terminated by an abstracted aluminium cornice. A striking feature is the use of purple brick with tile bonding. The wooden doors and window frames, tall windows and stone plinths give the project a stately aura. (ARCAM/LM)