KondorWessels Vastgoed wins tender Beethoven lot 2 with nature-friendly concept ‘Habitat Royale’

Project developer KondorWessels Vastgoed (part of VolkerWessels) has won the tender for the development of Beethoven lot 2 at Beatrixparken in Amsterdam Zuidas. The building design ‘Habitat Royale’, where the connection with nature is central, has been selected by the municipality of Amsterdam as the winning concept. The fully reusable housing development of approximately 15,000 m² BFA offers a very attractive, nature-inclusive, healthy living environment for many different people, plants and animals. In this way, the residents of the future live in the middle of nature, which has many advantages for their well-being. A real Habitat Royale. At the same time, the term ‘Royale’ is a nod to the royal residence in Beatrix Park. Construction is expected to start in the third quarter of 2024.

Councilor Reinier van Dantzig (housing): “This plan is a good example of how Amsterdam’s sustainability ambition leads to special developments in the city. The design is innovative and a wonderful example of nature-inclusive construction. I am very much looking forward to the end result, because this building is not only an asset for Zuidas, but also for biodiversity.”

Nature first

Habitat Royale is in collaboration with an integrated team of ecologists, landscape architects and engineers based on ecological principles. The building was designed by Mecanoo, where the meeting between nature and people is central. Arup is responsible for the integrated sustainability and construction, and is also involved in the eco-design. The versatile building brings two worlds together: the ‘hard’ Beethovenplein and the ‘soft’ nature of Beatrixparken. Instead of designing a hard building which is added to nature, the principle of ‘nature first’ has been applied and developed a building which is landscape. The organic and sculptural formation ensures that the design fits into the environment like a stacked landscape. With the many natural transitions and connections per orientation is given twice as much nature, thanks to the design of BOOM Landscape. The concept has been developed in collaboration with Tenderboost.

Living generously with nature

Habitat Royale offers a wide range of housing types for people at different stages of their lives, with different space needs. What binds them is their love of nature. The houses can be combined, horizontally and vertically, giving flexibility to change future uses. All 94 homes have a generous outdoor area of ​​at least 20 m², one of the special qualities of this plan.

The experience of green contributes enormously to the health of the residents. The green is everywhere on and in the building. On the fourth floor is a roof garden with healing forest, natural pool and meeting place, a quiet, overgrown place where you can experience the healing effects of nature.

Sculpture in the area

Habitat Royale forms a connection with the environment on all sides: the park, the square, the water, the sunbathing area and the lyceum. The undulating facade gives a varied and lively image and means that the plinth opens in all directions, so that the building stands like a sculpture in the park. Characteristic are the different orientations, the variation in the spaces around the plinth, the diagonal multi-sided view, the vegetation and the effect of depth due to the offset levels.

The varied program in the plinth is carefully placed. The nursery and the orangery with exhibition space have a strategic location. The various functions give character to the square’s architecture and scale. This creates a well-functioning ‘hybrid zone’ between private and public space.

Praise the jury’s verdict

The jury assessed the submission with a maximum score on all sustainability criteria, namely: circularity, energy and nature inclusiveness. The design has the least impact on the environment and adds innovative systems.

Thanks in part to Arup, Thijs de Zeeuw and Koninklijke Ginkel Groep, Habitat Royale is a ‘biodiversity net gain’ building, meaning that more biodiversity is added than removed. It is also a CO2-negative building: more CO2 is stored than emitted. Habitat Royale stores 33% more CO2 than is emitted in the materials during construction. In addition, the building generates more than twice as much energy as the building consumes. And a more diverse and coherent landscape is brought back with more hiding, nesting and foraging sites in integrated microhabitats. As a result, the entire biodiversity and ecological value of Beatrixparken and Zuidas will increase.

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