A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

Sluishuis was completed after four years of construction. Amsterdam IJburg has got a new meeting place in architecturally high quality. The building builds a bridge between IJburg and the city center. And with 442 different owner-occupied and rented homes, a public green roof garden with a walking route, bird and recreational islands, jetties and catering, Sluishuis is a place for everyone.

The project started when the municipality of Amsterdam declared the combination VORM and BESIX RED the winner of the quality tender for the development of Sluishuis in 2016. For the design of this unique building, they teamed up with the architectural firms Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) from Denmark and Dutch BarcodeArchitects. They entrusted the complex construction to BESIX Nederland and VORM Bouw. The result of their shared vision is an iconic development where sustainability and the well-being of residents and visitors are at the center

A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

Leading architecture

Sluishuis offers a modern and sustainable way of living in and around the water. It is a remarkable building with a unique volume that seems to float above the water thanks to a double cantilevers. The cantilevers are assembled at a high angle, forming a large entrance gate, like an opening lock, from IJ to the inner harbor of the building. On the other hand, the building has been kicked off to make a welcoming gesture towards IJburg with friendly green terraces.

Bjarke Ingels, founding partner of BIG, says: “After spending my years as an architect in the Netherlands in the late 20th century, it feels like coming home to contribute to the architecture of the city I have admired for so long. Dirk Peters, founding partner of Barcode Architects, adds: “With iconic architecture and new housing typologies, high-quality outdoor spaces and breathtaking views of the IJmeer, Sluishuis is a new landmark for IJburg and Amsterdam.”

A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

A new life experience on the water

Sluishuis consists of 442 energy-neutral owner-occupied and rental apartments and a program with houseboat plots, jetties for yachts, catering, business premises and a fully integrated water landscape with islands for recreation, water sports, fauna and flora and even energy production. The project is largely open to the public. Both residents and visitors can linger in the inner harbor, enjoy the promenade with magnificent views of the roof and watch waterfowl from the piers and islands or admire the historic houseboats.

The Sluishuis apartments are varied in typology and are designed for different target groups, income levels and age categories. In addition to compact city studios and water sports apartments, Sluishuis has duplex penthouses with both a relationship to the inner harbor and views of Lake IJ. On the stepped part are premium apartments with luxurious wooden roof terraces on the sun overlooking IJburg. The apartments at the bottom of the cantilever are extra special, with a beautiful view of the IJ and directly on the water.

Integral sustainability

The sustainability of Sluishuis is an integral part of the project. With an energy performance coefficient (EPC) of 0.00, the building generates more energy than it consumes. The building’s heating needs have been minimized by combining excellent insulation techniques, triple glazing, heat recovery on ventilation systems and wastewater. Energy consumption is further reduced by using a Heat Cold Storage (WKO) system in the ground for heating and cooling, in combination with district heating to cope with peak load times. The remaining energy consumption for heating, heat pumps, ventilation and LED lighting is fully compensated by approximately 2,200 m² of solar panels, to which an entire floating island next to the project is dedicated. In the development of Sluishuis, great emphasis was placed on landscaping and water collection. In front, the sides and in the inner harbor there are gardens with local plant species. The vegetation runs upwards over the roof terraces in integrated plant boxes. This gives a pleasant green atmosphere on the roof.

A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

Strengthening social cohesion

In addition to its sustainable properties, Sluishuis aims to stimulate and strengthen the social connection between residents and visitors. The staggered balconies create surprising visual relationships and exchanges. The public route over the roof, but also the children’s playground in the inner harbor, the pier landscape and the location of the wooden roof terraces stimulate spontaneous meetings.

Hans Meurs, CEO VORM: “If we were to organize the whole of the Netherlands as Sluishuis, we would no longer have an energy problem and loneliness would almost no longer be possible. A successful project in all respects. Work has been done on this. With passion That makes me proud. “

Natural materials

In terms of materials, the building seeks contrast, but also coherence with the environment. Natural materials have been chosen in the material palette, which gives the building a rich and natural look over the years. The facade’s abstract, untreated aluminum reflects the water and gives the volume a different look at any time of the day. In contrast, the stepped roof terraces and scaffolding landscape are made of wood, giving a tactile look. The facade of the building is circular.

A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

Technical complexity

“Thanks to the BESIX group’s strong technical expertise, together with partner VORM we have succeeded in realizing a technically complex project that includes a cantilever structure and an underground car park two floors below the water level. We won this icon on the water by building a temporary island and have now proudly returned Sluishuis back to the water, “says Nic De Roeck, General Manager of BESIX Nederland.

Success with investors and residents

“In addition to the ambitious architecture of BIG and Barcode Architects, BESIX RED was convinced by the project’s ESGengagement, which is fully in line with our values. This formula proved to be successful and attracted both the institutional investor BouwInvest and individual buyers looking for a unique housing experience and an ESG investment, “adds Gabriel Uzgen, CEO of BESIX Real Estate Development. The specialized real estate asset manager for institutional investors BouwInvest bought a large part of the project with the aim of renting out the apartments. Today, the project is almost complete. sold out, except for a few apartments and houseboat grounds.

District Manager Jan-Bert Vroege (Amsterdam Municipality) concludes: “With the completion of Sluishuis, IJburg will have a new iconic entrance. It gives a face to a neighborhood that is still in full development and will continue to grow significantly in the years to come. With its sustainable and energy-generating character and plenty of space for mid-market rentals, this project fits in well with the ambitions of the new city council. We are now taking up the challenge of further developing IJburg into a vibrant neighborhood for these new residents. ”

A new icon and entrance to Amsterdam IJburg

Photo: Ossip van Duivenbode

Later this year, Sluishuis will be transferred to VORM Vastgoedbeheer, which will be responsible for warranty work and maintenance for the Owners’ Association and for BouwInvest. They will support VvE with the parking basement, rental apartments (owned by BouwInvest) and the water program.

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