The new Conradhuis appears as a sustainable landmark for contemporary learning on the Amstel campus of the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. Housing the technical faculty departments in an open and interconnected design, the 27.000m2 building fosters a culture of knowledge exchange that is central to higher education today.
Two new volumes frame a triangular atrium opposite the existing Theo Thijssenhuis Building. The higher corner volume marks a prominent corner of the campus along the main urban axis while the lower block has a more intimate connection to the street and surrounding low-rise neighbourhood. The basis of these two structures comprises a simple prefabricated framework that can be flexibly filled in internally programme-wise and externally on the facades depending on the building orientation and function.
The interior is designed to flexibly accommodate diverse, changing functions both on a daily basis and with the future in mind. Housed on the first seven levels, the departments open onto the impressive atrium, the social hub of the building. It’s a constant hive of activity as students, staff and visitors meet, work and socialise along the lively internal street and on the cascading balconies, and move between the floors via the open staircases. Curving theatrically through the atrium, the terraces also visually and spatially connect the different departments; the lower terraces double as podiums during events.
The project is a close collaboration between Marc Koehler Architects, Powerhouse Company and de Architekten Cie. It received a BREEAM Excellent rating in 2015, the highest score awarded for an educational building in the Netherlands at the time.