Project name
Project data

Vrijdag Groningen
a house for Vrijdag

VRIJDAG is a house for amateur art in the broadest sense. It is more than a collection of rooms and more than one house. VRIJDAG is a real city block. Several city buildings form a garland of buildings around a enclosed city garden. VRIJDAG is part of the fabric of the inner city of Groningen and fits naturally into existing structures. VRIJDAG is the Forum's neighbour and completely complementary. Not smooth but rough. Not finished but always changing. Not singular but composed. Not an object but an organism. The power of VRIJDAG is to be found inside.

location: Groningen
status: competition
client: municipality of Groningen
year: 2021
consultant, building costs: Bureau Bouwkunde
consultant, signage, shutters: Het Echte Werk, Job Rompa
illustrations: team KSA, with special thanks to Josh Stevenson Brown and Keiti Lige

Museum Catharijneconvent Utrecht
gardens, art and a wonderful monastery

Our competition proposal for the extension of the museum takes the medieval monastery as its starting point. Its spatial beauty is the focus of the reorganisation of the museum. The museum zoning is carefully matched to the natural conditions and limitations of the existing buildings. A few building volumes of wood and brick, added with a careful hand, provide the desired renewal and extra space. The new buildings are timeless and sustainable and, together with the existing ensemble, can grow (preferably very) old.

site: Utrecht, historical centre
design: competition
consultants: Jan Piet van der Weele, technical installations
images: KSA, with special thanks to Mia Barnard, Ewout de Bleser and Teun van Dillen

inner city 'palace' for families

The monumental fire station on Paleisstraat in Antwerp, an Art Nouveau ensemble with officers' quarters, was built between 1908 and 1911, based on a design by Antwerp city architects Emiel van Averbeke, A.van Mechelen and Jan van Asperen. The impressive ensemble consisting of large halls, workshops, an inner courtyard and several group accommodations was used as a fire station for more than a century, so both the facades and the interior are exceptionally well preserved. From 2023, the building will be redeveloped into contemporary group homes. Five design teams worked on this complex design task, aiming to transform the building complex into a family-friendly, green, inner-city residential environment, while preserving the monumental qualities of the buildings.

site: Antwerpen, Paleisstraat
status: competition (2nd)
year: 2021
client: AG Vespa/ City of Antwerp
conservation architect: Callebaut Architecten
images: KSA, with special thanks to Nicky Brockhoff and Joppe Douma

youth facility Everaertsstraat Antwerp
youthful backyard

How do we transform a narrow and fully built courtyard in a densely populated neighbourhood into a green and inspiring learning and living environment? How do we build a school on such a location that feels like a home to children and young people from totally different backgrounds? And how do we ensure that both indoor and outdoor spaces are generous, sturdy and light enough to stimulate appropriation and initiative?

Municipal Education Antwerp urgently needs additional school capacity in its inner city districts. The municipality therefore organised an invited competition for a combined school for young children and spaces for youth groups in Antwerp North making use of an existing property. Having won the competition we will transform a number of existing buildings, including a former factory building into a spacious multifunctional facility for the youth. On the adjacent eastern part of the site we replace several structures of lesser quality with a new playground, a new gym and purpose built classrooms for the youngest and oldest children of the new school community.

location: Antwerp BE
status: competition design, 1st prize
installation and sustainability advisor: JanPiet vd Weele
illustrations: Rotraut Susanne Berner

tower in Blankenberge
view over the Uitkerkse Polder

For those who want to see, the landscape of the Uitkerkse polder is beautiful and abundant. The beauty of the area unfolds for visitors who want to make an effort for it. This concerns small discoveries, water birds close to the ground, salty soil, modest plants. The visitor center is attractive for those who want to discover the small scale, are curious about plants, animals, trees and especially the sky. 

With our building we want the visitor to look at the big and the small. We are not only concerned with the distant view, but also with the many small details that make up the nature of the Uitkerkse polder, with insects, birds and plants. Our tower matches the Uitkerkse polder and the modesty of the current visitor center. It is only spectacular for those who want to see it. The focus of the design is in the details.

locatie: Blankenberge
jaar: 2019
status: competition, 2nd price
illustratie: Rotraut Susanne Berner

Kruishoutem Care Centre
square, church and courtyard

The site for the new care campus in Kruishoutem is an exceptionally beautiful place with a long history. The new building replaces the wings of a neo-Gothic monastery, while the church is preserved. The existing park with monumental trees will be part of the new building complex. The project offers the opportunity to make the specific qualities of the site visible and accessible to the village community.

The program consists of residential care rooms, assisted living units and service flats, and it is almost four times larger than the original building. The vast volume needs to relate to the adjoining, graceful church.

status: Open Oproep, competition design, laureaat
year: 2011

Don Bosco Elementary School
learning from nature

The new school site is a children's paradise before we even start. It's vast and green, there are fields, orchards, a broad valley, water, wilderness, groves, endless possibilities to play. 

The strong brick architecture of the Salesians gives the place character and spatial identity. The venerable buildings anchor the new development to the village, the history and the meaning of the place. We would therefore like to give these buildings an important role in the design for the new school.

On the site behind the existing buildings we embrace the landscape and design a building complex that is embedded in the orchards. With its slightly sloping green roofs, pergolas, semi-enclosed outdoor spaces and school gardens, the new roof landscape looks like an extension of nature.

location: Groot Bijgaarden, Dilbeek, Brussels, BE
competition: 2nd prize, Open Oproep 3202 competition
year: 2017
advisor - technical installations: JanPiet vd Weele
advisor - landscape and garden architecture: Arne Deruyter

spatial manuscript

Vedute is a non-profit organisation collecting 'spatial manuscripts', personal and three-dimensional mission statements. Every year a selected number of artists, designers and architects are invited to contribute to the collection, answering a more or less abstract question formulated by the Vedute board. The sizes of the objects have been fixed to the exact dimension of the States Bible of the Netherlands, 7 x 32 x 44 cm. In 2009 we had the honour of making and publicly presenting our object, thinking about our vision of space and landscape.

design: 2009
realisation: 2009
client: Stichting Vedute

Elementary school with childcare
a school as many houses

For outsiders, entries for German architectural competitions display an amazing uniformity. It is almost impossible to tell whether a building is in the city or in a rural area. The vast majority of buildings are shaped like compact boxes; the façades generally consist of a rhythm of repetitive, vertical windows; the architecture is strictly modernistic and the floor plans are efficient and orthogonal.

location: Ulm Unterweiler (D)
competition: Open competition with prequalification
year: 2014
collaboration/local partner: Sanwald Architekten Steinheim am Albuch

Temporary shopping center Strijp S
chess in Eindhoven

The area Strijp S, a wide plot between two colossal former industrial buildings, will in the future be developed as a mixed-use residential area with shops. The urban master plan proposes two large square-shaped building sites with small-scale, kasbah-like buildings with large parking garages underneath.

status: Project
year: 2010
location: Strijp S, Eindhoven
client: Woningcorporatie Trudo

Oostvaarderse plassen Visitors Centre
railway dike with a view

A little walk in the Oostvaardersveld on a Saturday afternoon: a fox, a snake, birds, insects, butterflies, flowers. Small-scale nature with a rather un-Dutch variety. Yet something is missing. We hardly realise where we are. Behind the high railway embankment, nature seems inaccessible.
Of course the design location for a new visitors centre is beautiful in itself, but we also have our doubts about it. We prefer not to add more man-made things to the area. And preferably as little paving as possible. Even the paths and roads that cross the area now feel like disturbing interruptions in the fragile landscape, as well as the small buildings, streets and cars.

location: Oostvardersplassen
competition: -
year: 2009
client: Staatsbosbeheer
advisor - landscape: Matthieu Derckx

'Art and science of dementia care' - interdisciplinary research project
gardening together

1:1 experiment in care centre 'de Diem' in Diemen, Amsterdam. A care centre opens the door of its garden to its neighbour, a primary school. A previously closed garden becomes a school garden for all generations.

interdisciplinary research project: organised by The Netherlands Fund for Creative Industries
supervisors: Henri Snel, Caro van Dijk
location: De Diem, Diemen, Amsterdam