Creative Valley

Creative Valley

Architect
GENT&MONK ARCHITECTEN BNA
Location
Utrecht, Netherlands | View Map
Project Year
2010
Category
Offices

Creative Valley | Papendorp Utrecht, the Netherlands

GENT&MONK ARCHITECTEN BNA as Architects

Organisations seen as an ecosystem is the base of the design.


Constructive balance in Creative Valley


Glass boxes on a concrete core


Creative Valley consists of an elongated concrete nave with central facilities. With steel lattices the glass annexes, which contain the different office spaces, are hung on this nave. The design is so sophisticated that the annexes form a constructive balance.


What MONK architects wanted was actually not permitted at the construction site where Creative Valley has now risen. The volume of the building for instance had to be a square box, without any extensions. Only cutouts were allowed. We adjusted our design upon that by bringing the maze of hanging boxes more in line with each other. By that, the building is now more or less a square box with cut-outs. An additional advantage was that it was structurally easier to develop the extensions as suspended cantilevers.


Tree structure The design with which MONK architects and Paul van Dam Architect won the invited competition, consisted of a literal drawing of the proposed organization chart. The client wanted to realize a building for creative users containing both public, privileged and private space. Public space is primarily meant for meeting purposes; privileged spaces are the meeting rooms and presentation spaces which can be reserved by each user; and the private spaces are the individual business areas. This was illustrated as a tree with a trunk, branches and leaves. MONK architect has used this tree diagram literally as a starting point for the design.


This resulted in an elongated, relatively narrow (5.4 meters) nave with seats and pantries and suchlike. The heads of the nave are meeting and presentation rooms in various sizes and styles realized. On either side of the nave the glass extensions are hung in which the individual business units are located. On the roof of the lower extensions are common roof terraces.


Vision Concrete / Sichtbeton The nave has been made out of concrete, which was left in sight. The walls are poured in the work, the floors are precast wide slab floors. The main part of the concrete nave is a closed construction, which was an contractual advantageous. Windows are located mainly in the meeting rooms on the head. Installations are in the nave concealed under a raised floor.


The glass boxes however are carried out as transparent as possible, with glass façades and a steel frame construction, which is kept in sight and painted fire resisting. Concrete hollow-core slab floors (hohldielendecke) are laid in the steel Construction. The installations are visibly hung on the ceiling. The façade is executed as light as possible by using ‘HSB façade elements’ which are covered on the outside with aluminum frames.


Storey-high lattices The steel construction of the extensions consist of one storey-high lattices, constructed from hollow sections for the diagonals and tubular sections for the girder. For the balance of the building is was important that a lattice truss goes through the nave from box to box. The extensions on both sides therefore have equal lengths and in the horizontal plane are at the same place. In the vertical plane MONK architects managed to enlarge the variation, however, by developing two-layer extensions. On one side of the building MONK hung the second storey in the cantilever while on the other side it was piled precisely on top. Both the hanging as the piled have no storey stacked trusses, but only a large number of columns. This way, two offices are even higher than the roof of the nave. In three places wind bracing walls are fitted between the columns.


Rationally determined The number of steel trusses is mainly determined rationally. Not in each grid (3.6 m) is a steel lattice made because the hollow core floor pattern could also be a double span. However, each cantilever has steel trusses in the facade planes. Extensions wider than two grids have one or two additional steel trusses running through the office space. To a large extent, the connection between the trusses on both sides have been made with extra reinforcement in the concrete. In some places however that was not possible and therefore the crossing of the steel truss is visible in the nave.


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