Construction of MVRDV’s Market Hall started

Markthal Rotterdam - Still 5
© Provast

Yesterday the mayor of , Ahmed Aboutaleb and city councilor Hamit Karakus officially started the construction of the new Market Hall (previously featured here). The arched building located in the centre of Rotterdam, developed by Provast and designed by MVRDV is a hybrid of public market and apartment building.

The project with a total of 100.000 m2 is set to be completed in 2014 and part of the current regeneration of Rotterdam’s post war centre. Project developer Provast realizes the building, Unibail Rodamco invested in the shops and restaurants whilst Housing Corporation Vesteda will manage the rental apartments, making the building a socially integrated part of the city.

More images after the break.

Cite: Jordana, Sebastian. "Construction of MVRDV’s Market Hall started" 19 Nov 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 29 May 2015. <>
  • Pierre


  • mimar

    very interesting concept of how different urban elements can be combined in one project without disturbing each other. Great project! The other end should be open, too to make the market even more open and public.

  • Juni

    I really enjoy every work of MVRDV but this one is Out of proportions ! I mean… Really.

  • HOON


    • pepe

      yuppi! ole ole ole ole m v r d v

  • alejandro


  • jose

    this is very Rotterdam, very MVRDV, I love it!!!!

    • james

      this is very Rotterdam, very MVRDV, I hate it!!!!

      • lanois

        this is very Rotterdam, very MVRDV, I am bored with it!!!

  • hj

    I Rotterdam.
    (c) Powerhouse Company

  • Nicolas

    … Are you serious? this is like the ugliest thing i’ve ever seen.. hardly recognizable as a building!.. i’d say its a horseshoe put upside down.. oh wow how creative!

  • mime

    yiiiepppp. only in ROTTERDAM

  • aa

    Awwww man!
    this is r i d i c u l o u s !!!!
    they could have done a building with the shape of a banana and it would have looked better!

    • Juni


  • farflung

    great project. my first instinct is that the other end should be open too, but that may have created a nasty wind tunnel effect. At the very least, i think the public should be able to access the market from both ends. to top it off (literally): grow the fruit n veg on the roof, then sell it below!

    • mimar

      that’s exactly what i said!
      see above # November 19, 2009 at 13:11

      • farflung

        please forgive me for sharing your opinion.

  • laar

    it doesn’t look pretty but the idea is charming. it combines a monumental arch, apartments and a new market together in the middle of city which reinfores the role the future city centre plays. it also challenges the trandital concept of apartment living and gives an enormous semi-public space back to the city. It is very experimental and the key for the success of the project is the market within the buiding. If the market works well, it will be a good addition to Rotterdam in my view.

  • anon

    i see a half buried toilet seat…

  • simon

    It would have been more approperate to cluster bunch of bananas and call it architecture

  • SCarter

    So what exactly is the purpose of that big whole in the middle? Perhaps they could have made more use of all that volume.

  • bshi

    wow this is a perfect place to go during the day and shop around for some dutch stuff
    i love it
    its like your surrounded with fruits from all direction
    but please dont go there at night
    its scary.

  • cucu

    wind tunnel? Are you serious? Has anybody noticed the glass covering the horse shoe hole? Come on people, enlarge the drawings, renders and photos of the posts, please…

    • farflung

      i stand corrected…though i think it would be better if it wasn’t completely enclosed.

  • g

    the fremont experience is better, and more original. this is just a rip off of an idea built 15 years ago.

  • CaioM

    it’s a misture os Disney World and Carmen Miranda. And i can’t say it’s very Rotterdam cause the place where the market will be built doesn’t fit with MVDRV! It’s scary…

  • Jessica

    … interiour design of the largest fruit and vegetable murals ever created…. really? Thats supposed to be beautiful?

    Can someone please send the person responsible for the fruit back to design school?

  • joanne

    absolutly TERRIFYING!

  • Timothy

    Very nice indeed my fellows! Finally a new concept that has reached a level of uncompromised architecture, while staying recognizable as what it is. Please, assume the context in a country so small, with so many people. Yes, it is ugly, but it’s what it means to be: architecture as a solution to a problem of dwelling, not as a statement of beauty. Way better than any attempt of “blobbing with AutoCad”, or “Maxing in 3D”. Anyway, WYSIWYG, the rendering says it all: Winy Maas rules again!

  • Glazed

    I’ll bet a grand where this concept came from. An intern took long a piece of blue foam and made that shape with the foam cutter – but without the void. Inserted it in the site model and went “huh.” Then the intern went back and cut out the void. Then stuck it in the site model and everyone’s eyes bulged. It would all explain the extruded shape.

    And I have nothing wrong with that. This is really what I love about the Dutch, they’re not encumbered with this cultural baggage that would carry into architecture. It allows for true experimentation, which this building reflects. “Hey, a tube 12 stories high, why not?”

    Please, put away your baggage of what’s ugly and references to “toilet seats.” I thought we got over that first year of architecture school.

  • harry

    megalomania, realy Dutch

  • rmsnmz

    Well, obviously not the prettiest building but it has it moments. The inner space has lots of potentials beyond its main market space program. However, all in all, it is no more than a blown-up diagram out of a foam cutter.

    Also, I believe the reason that most people hates is its square windows. No need to mention that the hatred comes from the trauma from 80′s and 90′s, well, fashion always comes back after a while.

    Being “ugly” is the new black. We almost passed this too, though.

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  • fernando

    i follow them for a long time and…
    Im still astonished… in bad way…

    Can you upload some plans to give it a second chance :S

  • PMC

    Agh..!! Didn’t like it AT ALL..!!

    Clearly, there’s a lack of study, deepness and most of all transcendence in the design.

    I think they have already reached the point when a studio prostitute itself…

    WE DON’T NEED more buildings that LOOK nice…

    WE NEED buildings that are USEFUL, buildings that CONTRIBUTE to the context and society… buildings that GIVES somethings to the land that is exploted.

    WE DON’T NEED more sculptures and murals….. WE ARE ARCHITECTS…. not sculptor…


    • fernando

      i agree

      “WE DON’T NEED more buildings that LOOK nice… ”

      it doesnt even look nice…

  • sh

    it might be a very noisy space. even if the apartments will be well isolated (and probably permanently, which will leave them only with one facad), the noise of the market itself might be unbearable without a proper acoustic treatment of the inner arch, which at the present seems to be sacrificed for the sake of an image.

    • Alex.

      The discomfort of the noisy crowd downstairs for the apartments occupants also crossed my mind and the scale of the problem gets really obvious just by taking a look at this cross section of the building, here:

      Yes, having a market with fresh products and many options for socializing by a cup of coffee as close as downstairs may get appealing every now and then but I’m sure the noise will repeatedly get appalling and that surely takes all the joy away. It’s pretty obvious that that the sound insulation needed in this particular case will considerably increase the costs of the construction works.

      I tried earlier to post this also as a response for Pierre, with the very first (and only) OMG reaction to this building, but it seems that posting there did not work. So, anyway, I’ll write it here, to you, again: there is this other thing that bothers me about this project as it looks, well… overlooked by the proposing architect(s). The little, old, brown building at the far side of the new building lot: what did the poor building to deserve such a disrespectful outspoken walling in treatment from the new, big, fancy neighbour? I know it’s just a little guy, but it was there first, wasn’t it?

  • Waela

    I have seen a lot of strange architecture, but this is on a whole new level! looking at this a thousand questions race through my mind: why the arched shape? why the thousand square windows? why a market in the middle? is it such a nice view to watch people shop for groceries? and as if the building itself is not ugly enough, why the gigantic images of fruits and vegetables? my god what has happened to architecture?!