Architects: Vincent Van Duysen Architects
Location: Kortrijk, Belgium
Area: 3600.0 sqm
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Koen Van Damme
From the architect. The building program existed of an office part, combined with a more industrial production unit and warehouse. The combination of both programs created a challenge for Vincent Van Duysen Architects, both on a technical level as well as on a design level.
For the organization of the outdoor space, they chose a clear division between both functions, created by separate entrances, each with their own distinct design and character. Once you enter the building, this separation is discarded, both regarding internal organization, as regarding the design.
The building is conceived as an industrial concrete structure, in which the program is atypically stacked on three building levels. The more industrial activities are logically placed on the lower levels. The offices are divided over three floors, with the representative part of the offices positioned on the top floor. In this way, a horizontal layering is created in the building, characterized by a massive plinth (consisting of two floors) as a carrier for a light top part.The division between the two parts is created by a massive, image defining canopy. This procedure creates a strong architectural expression, but at the same time it distances the above offices from their industrial environment, so they are characterized by wide panoramic views, adjoining terraces and green roofs visually continuing in the surrounding landscapes.
Also in the interior design we see a confrontation, with the more tactile office furniture being used as a structuring element within the industrial concrete structure.
Also in the treatment of the facades we find a layered concept. The steel gratings, used both on the lower as on the higher part, are applied before the concrete façade, the windows, as well as for enclosing patio’s. This results in a diffuse façade, only gradually revealing the permeability of the building volume.