H.A. Maaskant
Van Dommelen, Kroos, Senf, Van Herwerden, Sir Basil Spence
The Hammerson Property & Investment Trust; BOZ N.V.
Metro 51-53-54
Gert Jonker, 'Monument voor middelmatigen', Bouw, oktober 1973, p.1295-1297; 'Gebouw Rivierstaete te Amsterdam', Bouw, oktober 1973, p.1298-1300.

Office building on Amsteldijk

A joint venture between a Dutch investor and a British one purchased the plot of land on the corner of Trompenburgstraat in 1967. Their aim was to provide generic office space for letting. The original idea was to build something resembling De Nederlandsche Bank on Frederiksplein, but the Municipality of Amsterdam wished to see a volume of horizontal character on this site rather than a tower.

The building falls into place as one in a series of large individual buildings interspersed here and there among the smaller-scale fabric along the banks of the River Amstel. But the architects tried to limit the monumental character of Rivierstaete by adopting a strongly horizontal design. They also gave the building a stepped profile to avoid blocking the sun for the dwellings in Trompenburgstraat: it descends from eight storeys on the side facing the River Amstel to four storeys on the Trompenburgstraat side. The floor height of 3.6 metres makes the offices well suited to flexible applications.

Rivierstaete comes across as an irregular stack of thick slabs with overhangs measuring up to nine metres in depth. The facades consist of prefabricated panels clad with small white tiles. The windows are of dark grey glass framed in clear-anodized aluminium. Through among other things this choice of materials, the building presents a striking contrast to the surrounding district (Rivierenbuurt) which is dominated by dark-coloured brick. The building’s shape and size have prompted local residents to nickname it ‘the Ape Rock’. (ARCAM/VK)