Nieuw Terbregge | Mecanoo | Rotterdam

  • urban plan and design: Mecanoo
  • 2,5 ha
  • 107 ‘double-deckers’ and 48 waterfront houses

From the authors:

  • social housing
  • flexible layouts
  • integrated, private car parking
  • within this limited site, the dwellings express both individuality and a new form of collectiveness
  • safe children’s play area is provided close to the dwellings, which share communal facilities
  • the project features stacked ground planes and houses grouped on peninsulas
  • every island has a lower level with car parks and an upper timber deck as a shared space onto which the kitchens front
  • trees grow through openings in the deck, and these gaps also allow filtered daylight to reach below
  • stairs here connect the two levels
  • an association of home owners manages this ‘double-decker’ community and other shared facilities such as a mini cogeneration plant and garbage room
  • suspended between the peninsulas are jungle bridges, informal connections that offer children an adventurous area for play
  • groups of apartments are carefully arranged so that the roofs slope in alternating directions
  • each half of an individual apartment facade alternates between dark, raw larch wood and smooth white stucco to create a dynamic striped pattern across the buildings
  • integrated shutters control light and ventilation through the larch facades.
  • the sunken living rooms feel especially tall and spacious because they open onto small private gardens facing the canal
  • four living blocks are placed opposite the peninsulas, either in or beside the water
  • appearing as a large villa, each block consists of eight apartments under one roof

From Housing Reasearch

  • Project has won numerous awards for the innovative design design of the areas outside the dwellings
  • the houses are aligned in parallel rows oriented north-south, divided by fingers of water channeled from the adjacent canal
  • to separate car traffic from pedestrians, the architects have invented a “double-decker” streetcars circulate at the ground level where each house has a garage;
  • pedestrians circulate at the upper level supported by a timber deck span
  • open stairs connect the two streets and the open timber boarding of the deck allows sun light to filter to the lower level car park
  • the space of the upper level is animated with trees planted in the car park and emerging up through intentional holes cut in the pedestrian deck
  • the architects describe their scheme as an attempt to recreate the “holiday camp” and as a “protest against the tidiness” of neighboring housing developments
  • The internal arrangement is straightforward. At the car park level are a small lobby and cloakroom.  At the ped-deck level are the kitchen and living room.  Bedrooms and bathrooms are on the floor above.  The kitchen is designed as a very public part of the house, with the front door opening into it, and it acts as the access to the rest of the house

images sources: MECANOO and Housing Reasearch



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