AAN DE EEM:  PUBLIC WATERFRONT BUILDING

The Eem riverfront in Amersfoort is transforming. Historically, the river served as a vital infrastructure for industry and sanitation. However, in recent decades, there has been a shift in perspective, with efforts to reclaim the waterfront as a new space for recreation and nature.

In line with these developments, our proposal aims to contribute by introducing a new public building that works as a hinge between the city and the waterfront. In combination with a new stepped embankments the massing of the building creates multiple levels that foster public areas for social interaction and more intimate spaces for rest and relaxation.

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SITE & MASSING

The plot is located at the intersection of the waterfront and a perpendicular green urban axis. Because of its public function and separation from the adjacent block structure an autonomous composition was designed that is oriented toward important vantage points in the surounding. As such the building forms a beacon that signals its common role in the urban fabric.

MATERIAL & TECTONICS

The building has a wooden structure and facade. A custom-made facade profile was developed that creates more differentiation and richness in the facade as one approaches the building. This effect is particularly strong on the round facade that is oriented toward the main entrance to the building.

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SILHOUETTES ON THE EEM

In addition to a stepped form the building also has a distinctive silhouette that changes as you move around it. This structure is inspired from various water-related structures, from the windmills on the Eem to industrial structures that were connected to the water. Besides seeking to give continuity to this lineage of embankment architecture the structure also has the advantage that climate control systems are hidden from view.

Client:  Schipper Bosch

Location: Gemeente Amersfoort

Partners:  KarbouwTREETEK, Platowood

Year: 2023 – 2024