Dreessen Willemse adds a modern brick building to a historic Utrecht street

The Heerlen-based architects chose these features to reference the period properties on either side, but paired them with modern materials and forms that include large expanse of glazing and slender frames. Its glazing is   set at an angle, directing views towards the main street rather than into a neighbouring property. The student housing comprises 13 bedrooms, a common room and shared bathrooms. On the ground floor, large panes of glass form a generous shopfront, while the upper shop floor has a row of tall windows. One side window is positioned out of kilter with the pattern of the others. Dormer windows rise above the red brick facade of the   only modern building on a historic Utrecht street, designed by local office Dreessen Willemse Architecten to house a shop and   student residences   (+ slideshow). They are framed with thick sections of pale grey stone that protrude slightly from the brick facade. “The uneven division of the front facade, not visible at first glance, refers to the two buildings that originally stood there and conforms to the parcelling of the plots on the Steenweg.”

Shop space is arranged over the first two levels of the building, connected by an escalator. Glazed doors open out of dormer structures on the third floor, which is housed within the roof, onto a communal terrace set in the crook of the L-shaped roof structure. Project credits:
Architect: Dreessen Willemse Architecten in collaboration with diederendirrix architects
Real estate developer: FiMek estate
Structural engineer: IMd Raadgevende Ingenieurs
Building services consultant: Huisman van Muijen
Consultant for building physics, fire safety and acoustics: Nieman Raadgevende Adviseurs
General contractor: Burgland Bouw
Section – click for larger image It houses shops on the two lower levels and student accommodation on the two upper storeys. The window openings on the upper floors are arranged in a rhythm that matches those of the buildings they face. “As a condition for the demolition, the municipality required that a ‘new monument’ be built in its place,” said the studio.

Updated: 22.11.2014 — 17:18