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Friday, April 10, 2009

The Matchbox, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam mixed use design receives aesthetics approval
Granted aesthetic planning permission in Amsterdam North, The Matchbox is an blend of artistic, creative and commercial spaces tailored to suit this artistic quarter. The building is shaped specifically as a result of the accommodation of companies and zoning regulations.

It houses 22 corporate units, a rooftop restaurant and semi-underground parking lending its playful fa├žade as an aesthetic point of interest. Units cantilever up to 5 meters, each individually angled and stacked on top of another to give every company its own space and identity. Bridges constructed above a central atrium garden act as catalyst for the networking between companies while distributing sunlight through the building.

The building uses this themed rental to attract start-up businesses and the artistic theme allows the project extra creative license. The rotated nature of the units of the Matchbox merge with its simple large windows framed in black borders recalling a strip of film negatives.

The Matchbox building will be made of prefabricated concrete. The bent faces of the cantilevering boxes are constructed in prefabricated concrete walls. The hang not on a structural core but on the structural shear walls. This effect completes the shape of the stacked boxes. Use of steel in this building structure is minimised. Except the internal light non-structural walls have a galvanized steel finish. In their interior this enabling tenants to use the wall to pin up their work using magnets. The black frames around the boxes are constructed in folded aluminium elements glued on stiff insulation. Frames are shoved over the edges of the concrete floor. All the other grey coloured exterior surfaces are sealed with a seamless Poly-Urethane finish, spray on.

Initially delayed by the recession last autumn, private investors have now gained faith through adjusting building costs, lowering the costs for future rent, and the project is now back on track for completion in 2010.source:
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