ARCAM Building in Oosterdok, Amsterdam, the Netherlands by René Van Zuuk Architekten

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The ARchitecture Centre Amsterdam (ARCAM) demanded a importantly more prominent accommodation. Hence a tremendous location just about to the Oosterdok was apportioned to this promotional institute. In the neighborhood of Renzo Piano’s New Metropolis was a little pavilion also designed by him that was going to be dismantled. The columns and some of the floors needed to be integrated in the new design.

Reuse of base components wasn''t the only limitation laid upon the architect. Consultation in the early stages of the design process of several parties ensued in a maximum building envelope. This outline rendered a trapezoidal building volume up to three stories high.

First, the view of the pavilion from the Maritime Museum needed to be utmost modest. This providing the possibility to lower the waterfront façade compared to the street façade at the Prins Hendrikkade. Second, the street facade needed to represent a closed character and at the same time the building should open up on the waterfront. Last but not least it was demanded that the pavilion would be a compact monolith.

The different facades all have their own distinctive perspective. For example the folded skin combined with the bevelling glass facade results in a spectacular entrance. On the other hand the east side displays a most austere view. The waterfront view reveals the soul of the pavilion through the curtain glass, barely showing the structural steelwork.

Architect: René van Zuuk Architekten
Client: Ontwikkelingsbedrijf Gemeente Amsterdam / NL
Building Contractor: H.J.Jurrïens b.v., Utrecht/ NL
Structural Ingeneering: Advies en Ingenieursbureau Van der Laar, Eindhoven/ NL
Site Area: 300 sqm
Constructed Area: 477 sqm
Budget: US $2.03 M
Photographs: Luuk Kramer