ALONG THE STREET AND ON THE WATERFRONT, AMSTERDAM
The Kadijken is a slightly disordered, but pleasant, part of east Amsterdam. In 1997 an opportunity passed by when a plot of land came free, a plot in which the two sides have a totally opposite character. One side is located on a narrow city street, de Hoogte Kadijk, with a wide variety of plots and façades. The opposite side is located along the waterside of the Nieuwe Vaart with its old dockyards.
Facing the narrow street are twelve small student flats, each with a French balcony, spread out over two volumes, one slightly larger than the other. In doing so we follow the existing variety of scales in the street in the new building. Is it one or are there two buildings? The entrance to the dwellings lies in a 1.5 meter wide passage between the two built volumes. The reception is situated on the ground floor in the base of the building, easy to spot and easily accessible. The street has a variety of colors, materials and windows. The red brickwork and the broad white framework, lining up with the surface of the facade, refer to the most dominant materials and detailing styles throughout the city of Amsterdam.
On the opposite side, on the Nieuwe Vaart, you find three functions: office space, archive and parking, accommodated in one rectangular volume. The façade is made entirely of corten steel, partly perforated, folded to mimic timber slat-boarding, combined with a frameless green glass curtain wall, designed by M3. This materialization and the detail of the big sliding doors are a nod to the old docks, with their sheds and ships. The immediate neighbors look out onto a roof covered with sedum plants.