Text description provided by the architects. This parking facility at the heart of the TU Delft campus accommodates 2100 bicycles and is combined with a bicycle workshop and a coffee facility.
The main challenge in the design brief was to transform the large bicycle storage into an attractive hangout spot. This was achieved by positioning the relatively small coffee bar and workshop into an elongated and transparent volume on a green slope, relating to the central TU Delft square on one side and the bicycle storage on the other, underneath a big bicycle deck. This position gives the building the appearance of a pavilion rather than storage. A ‘lazy’ stair towards the entrance of the coffee bar and workshop also functions as a gallery, overlooking the square. On top of the coffee bar is the second parking-level cantilevering, functioning as a canopy for the coffee bar. Several entrances and stairs around the building generate attractivity and accessibility on all sides, inviting the cyclist to come over. The existing transformer house at the corner is added as a beacon to the design.
Transparent volume on a grass slope
Versatility is an important aspect of the design. The grass slope the building stands on, partially hides the bikes from view and fits the building into its surroundings, making it attractive and accessible on all sides. It also prevents people from putting their bike against the façade. It also hides the bicycles at ground level from view while the cyclist can still look outside freely, giving him a safe feeling. The workshop is located on ground level with a direct connection to the parking. The coffee bar is located at a 1-meter height, overlooking the square and the parking. The height of the ceiling varies, giving the seating area its own accent.
Flexible steel structure
The steel construction is based on a grid of 5x6 meters. This grid accommodates both standards as double layered racks, generating future expansion possibilities. The joints that link the column to the beams are stiff, preventing cross braces taking up bicycle space. The parapet has its construction on the outside, giving shadow and depth to the façade. The whole structure can be easily dissembled.
The architecture conforms the vision of TU Delft; the appearance is in accordance with the use and the engineers' architecture is down to earth. The design follows the Chicago tradition of campus buildings by Mies van der Rohe in an anodized coffee-brown color. The green window frames give the building its own character.
This new bicycle pavilion generates liveliness a social control at the heart of the TU campus. By designing an all sided building, providing a spacious place orientated to the sun and by positioning the coffee bar on the square in an elongated shape, a bicycle pavilion has been created where one can meet easily and have a pleasant stay. A formerly bare bicycle shed has been turned into a popular place that enhances the liveability and social cohesion of the surroundings.