Schuurbain / Atelier Vens Vanbelle

© Tim Van De Velde

Architect: Atelier Vens Vanbelle
Location: ,
Engineer: UTIL
Project Year: May 2010
Photographs: Tim Van De Velde

© Tim Van De Velde

When building a barn architecture is reduced to its essence: walls with a roof and some windows and doors. It is a quest for a pure and logical architecture, an architecture that addresses the middle between efficiency and beauty of the structure itself.

© Tim Van De Velde

Concrete was chosen for the construction of the two walls, which are anchored to the polished concrete slab. There was made a cut-out in each of the walls to create an open window at eye level. The shuttering of the walls was a tense jute, a material directly related to the idea barn, which is outlined in the concrete. This method of encasing the concrete leads towards a more tactile result and a visual lightness.

© Tim Van De Velde

Between these concrete walls wooden trusses were sandwiched by three horizontal wooden beams that also accentuate the length of the barn. As each truss is clamped the need for a tractor in the horizontal truss was eliminated, which leads to a new type of truss and an open feeling on the inside of the barn.

© Tim Van De Velde

This openness is reinforced by the material of the roof, which consists of polycarbonate sheets, both literally and figuratively a light material. The cam and the gutters are made of copper, which accentuate some lines in the roof.

drawing 01

To seal the remaining openings several methods were used: the construction of the gates is based on a technique commonly used for doors of barns and stables: they are made of frames from galvanized steel with an outer planking. To close rest of the front facade two plateaus were made on which hay is stacked. The side walls above the concrete were filled with profiles and glass from conservatories.

drawing 02

Because of its simplicity in concept and construction this barn has a very powerful architectural expression, while the building is perfectly integrated into the environment. It is an architecture that can withstand the test of time, without having to lose intrinsic quality.

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Schuurbain / Atelier Vens Vanbelle" 14 Feb 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 24 May 2015. <>
  • qustion

    i know this is Belgium and not Dubai but still, what about solar gain?, wont this place become uncomfortably hot on a sunny summers day?