OMA’s De Rotterdam, a project 15 years in the making, is designed to maximize the number of functions possible in 44 floors. In addition to shops, hotels and office space, this “vertical city” also contains apartments that use transformable furniture to pack a variety of uses into small spaces. Chairs double as wall art and sofas flip into beds, showing that a 60 square meter apartment is more versatile than we think.
Developer Wim De Lathauwer explains, ”Why would we only think in quantity of bedrooms and square meters, while many of these spaces are used only sporadically?…In The Netherlands we are simply not used to this way of thinking. De Rotterdam is the ideal project when it comes to maximizing the joy of every square meter. We deal with an audience who understands this and yearns for this extra quality. Even in the large apartments the office, wardrobe- and guest room are combined in one space. Actually, it is very logical.” You can see the dynamic furniture, designed by Clei Italia, in the video below.
Read more about The Netherlands’ largest building here.
Architects: Krill Architecture , Christian Müller Architects
Location: Rochussenstraat 355, 3023 DL Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Project Architects: Harmen van de Wal, Christian Müller
Contributors: Arnold de Bruin, Barbara Costatino, Raimonda Cibayte, PaulPeter Kuper, Magdalena Merchan, Jiri Serek, Elena Vicente
Programmatic Concept : Het Observatorium, Greetje Hoitink en/and Krill architecture, met/with Hans Venhuizen, Michaela Stegerwald Architectuur, John van de Wetering Advies
Area: 1385.0 sqm
Photographs: Jeroen Musch
At the opening of the newly constructed De Rotterdam building in his home city, Rem Koolhaas spoke at length about how this “vertical city” was designed to appear scaleless, despite its urban context. More about what Koolhaas had to say about the project and the city, after the break…
In the architectural stomping ground that is Rotterdam, it’s no small task to design a building that actually stands out. But, according to The Guardian’s Oliver Wainwright, the recently completed De Rotterdam building manages to. Although the Koolhaas-designed structure, which houses offices, apartments and even a boutique hotel, may at first seem simple (simplistic, even), Wainwright praises how the shifting masses cleverly play tricks on your perception. The building is undoubtedly impressive, but is the unconventional envelope enough to distract from a bland-at-best interior? Read the rest of Wainwright’s critique here. evaluate
Architects: West 8, Benthem Crouwel Architects, MVSA Meyer en van Schooten Architecten
Location: Stationsplein 1, 3013 AJ Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Lead Architects: Jan Benthem, Marcel Blom, Adriaan Geuze, Jeroen van Schooten
Design Team: Arman Akdogan, Anja Blechen, Freek Boerwinkel, Amir Farokhian, Joost Koningen, Joost van Noort, Falk Schneeman, Daphne Schuit, Matthijs Smit (†), Andrew Tang, Wouter Thijssen, Joost Vos
Area: 50,000 sqm
Photographs: Jannes Linders, Skeyes
Architects: Mei Architecten en Stedenbouwers
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Design Team: Robert Winkel, Menno van der Woude, Martin van der Werf, Robert Platje, Pepijn Berghout, Ernst de Jager, Reshma Gopal, Daniel Beirâo, Ben de Lange and June Ho Kim
Client: Havensteder, Lingotto, BAM woningbouw
Consultant : Grontmij
Constructor: Pieters Bouwtechniek, Delft
Area: 3560.0 sqm
Photographs: Jeroen Musch
The post-war city centre of Rotterdam is ruled by commerce. Only five percent of the city’s inhabitants live in the centre, which is almost entirely occupied by highstreet fashion chains, fast food restaurants, and offices. After shop closing time, the shutters go down and the streets are deserted. The municipality would like to lure more inhabitants into the centre – but space for new residential buildings is scarce. So in recent years, a 1960s cinema and church had to make way for a huge new housing complex designed by Alsop Architects, and a residential tower by Wiel Arets was speedily attached to Marcel Breuer’s department store, De Bijenkorf. It was not until the municipality suggested forcing new housing high-rises into the green courtyards of the Lijnbaanhoven residential complex, designed in 1954 by Hugh Maaskant, that there were protests and the project had to be cancelled. For the time being, that is.
One densification project, however, tried not to destroy or debase the post-war building originally occupying its site. In many respects, the Karel Doorman residential high-rise could even be called the saviour of the old Ter Meulen department store. It might be rather uncommon for a valiant hero to crouch down on the shoulders of the little old lady he intends to rescue – but that’s more or less what happened here.