Koolhaas on Place, Scale, and (De) Rotterdam

© Richard John Seymour

All images are from photographer Richard John Seymour,who caught ’ recently completed De Rotterdam building on a broodingly foggy morning. 

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…

De Rotterdam / OMA

© Michel van de Kar

Architects: OMA
Location: Rotterdam, The
Architect In Charge: , Reinier de Graaf, Ellen van Loon, Kees van Casteren
Area: 162000.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Michel van de Kar, Charlie Koolhaas, Ossip van Duivenbode, Philippe Ruault

Wainwright Weighs In on Rem’s De Rotterdam

Courtesy of

In the architectural stomping ground that is , 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

Educational Center Erasmus University Medical Center / Claus en Kaan Architecten

© Sebastian van Damme

Architects: Claus en Kaan Architecten
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Area: 34,000 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Sebastian van Damme, Bart Gosselin, Marco van Middelkoop

Dreamhouse / Claus en Kaan Architecten

© Sebastian van Damme

Architects: Claus en Kaan Architecten
Location: Rotterdam,
Design Team: Kees Kaan, Vincent Panhuysen Luca Baialardo, Timo Cardol, Aksel Coruh, Luuk Dietz, Paolo Faleschini, Antonia Rief
Area: 1,050 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Sebastian van Damme

Rotterdam Centraal / Team CS

© Jannes Linders

Architects: West 8, Benthem Crouwel Architects, MVSA Meyer en van Schooten Architecten
Location: Stationsplein 1, 3013 AJ , The
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
Year: 2013
Photographs: Jannes Linders, Skeyes

Schiecentrale 4b / Mei Architecten

© Ronald Tilleman

Architects: Mei Architecten
Location: Rotterdam, The
Projectmanagement: BOAG
Area: 55000.0 sqm
Year: 2008
Photographs: Ronald Tilleman, Jeroen Musch, Courtesy of

De Fabriek in Rotterdam / Mei Architecten en Stedenbouwers

© Jeroen Musch

Architects: Mei Architecten en Stedenbouwers
Location: Rotterdam, The
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

Parasite or Savior? Ibelings van Tilburg’s Hovering New High-Rise

© Ossip van Duivenbode for

This article originally appeared in uncube magazine as “Saviour or Parasite?

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.

Exodus Cube / Personal Architecture BNA

© René de Wit

Architects: Personal Architecture
Location: Overblaak 56, , The Netherlands
Architect In Charge: Maarten Polkamp, Sander van Schaik
Design Team: Leendert van Grinsven, Wiepkjen Kingma, Froukje van de Klundert
Area: 1,200 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: René de Wit

Van Buchem House / Siebold Nijenhuis Architect

© Menno Emmink

Architects: Siebold Nijenhuis Architect, Broekbakema
Location: Rotterdam, South
Landscape: Gudrun Bosch
Area: 110.0 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Menno Emmink

Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam 2013

Courtesy of City of & Creative Industries Fund

The 2013 Architecture Film Festival Rotterdam (AFFR), which focuses around the theme, ‘Time Machine,’ is set to take place in the cinemas of LantarenVenster October 10-13. The event will all be about evaluating the past and dreaming about the future. This will be done with movies, lots of movies, in which ‘the world called city’ is the leading character. The festival will also hosts television series, debates and talk shows. More information after the break.

IABR 2014 Call for Projects

Courtesy of IABR 2014

With the theme of ‘Urban by Nature’, the sixth edition of the International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam opens in May 2014 in the Kunsthal in . With Dutch landscape architect Dirk Sijmons as the curator, IABR is calling for best practices from all over the world to support and substantiate the Biennale’s main exhibition’s narrative. Prospective participants who have designed or are designing concrete projects that deal with the relationship between man, nature and city, are invited to submit their applications by June 9, 2013. For more information, please visit here.

Luchtsingel / ZUS + Hofbogen BV

© Ossip van Duivebode

The Luchtsingel is a pedestrian footbridge in Rotterdam that is being realized by crowdfunding, an exciting new means of funding in which the public donates money via an online platform (essentially investing in an unrealized idea) in order to make a project reality. The Luchtsingel, which uses the slogan “the more you donate, the longer the bridge”, has resonated with the public imagination and surpassed its initial funding goals, becoming an important part of ’s urban rejuvenation.

Read more about the unusual birth of this public bridge, after the break…

Villa Vonk / VenhoevenCS

© Luuk Kramer

Architects: VenhoevenCS
Location: Hoogvliet, ,
Team: Ton Venhoeven, Cécilia Gross, Danny Esselman, Eelco Bergman, Jan Lebbink, Alexander Speelman (intern), Katarzyna Duleba (intern), Igor Začek (intern)
Area: 4,714 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Luuk Kramer

9 Houses on the Water / BLAUW architecten + FARO Architecten

© Jeroen Musch

Architects: BLAUW architecten + FARO Architecten 
Location: , The Netherlands
Design Team: Carin ter Beek, Roel Lichtenberg
Area: 175 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Jeroen Musch

Hoogvliet / VMX Architects

© Christian Richters

Architects: VMX Architects
Location: Alverstraat, Rotterdam, The
Architect In Charge: Don Murphy
Client: Vestia Hoogvliet / Estrade Projecten and Ambap BV Projectontwikkeling
Area: 18,860 sqm
Year: 2007
Photographs: Christian Richters

De Karel Doorman / Ibelings van Tilburg Architecten

© Ossip van Duivenbode

Architects: Ibelings van Tilburg Architecten
Location: , The Netherlands
Area: 10,500 sqm
Photographs: Ossip van Duivenbode, J. Versnel en J.F.H. Roovers