Powerhouse Company, in close collaboration with RAU, recently completed Villa L.
Designed to fulfil the desires and needs of a young family, Villa L is set in the woods of central Netherlands, fully oriented towards the sun and the views on the garden. Villa L is a spatially diverse residence where every floor has its own strong identity, creating a broad spatial spectrum within a unified whole.
A young family with three children asked Powerhouse Company and RAU to design a house that would fulfill their dreams: a paradox of a house that is simple yet surprising, open yet specific, minimal yet luxurious.
Powerhouse Company, responsible for the design, resolved these contradictions with a house based on a radical differentiation of spatial experiences on three floors (of which one is subterranean). RAU embedded the sustainable strategy for the villa in the design.
The new town hall building of Lochem has been officially opened. Mr. Clemens Cornielje, the Queen’s Commissioner of Gelderland, and Mr. Spekreijse, mayor of Lochem, jointly performed the official opening. Within less than four years after winning the architectural competition in April 2009 the building has been completed. On 2 March 2011, the fist stone of the new building was layed, one year later, the highest point was reached. The delivery took place in December 2012 and since mid-January 2013, the municipality is using the building. On behalf of the construction team contractor Aan de Stegge, interior architects Groen+Schild and architect Thomas Rau were also present during the official opening. On Saturday, February 9, an Open House is held in the new town hall building. Between 11.00 and 16.00 hours, everyone is welcome for a tour of the building. The address is: Hanzeweg 8 in Lochem, The Netherlands
‘A building for everyone’
The new town hall of Lochem is a building that consists of several parts, each with their own features and appearance. In the heart of the building the public area is located with the strikingly designed municipal council boardroom directly above. In the adjecing two wings are the offices and meeting rooms of the Mayor, Councillors and their staff located. The various support services and technical areas are also situated here. The whole is placed above a sunken parking for employees and visitors, and covers a total of 11,300 m2.
Important principle in the design of the building was the proximity to both the city with its historical center and also the canal with the wider area surrounding it. The new town hall building intends to bridge both. The public square in front connects the new public building with the center of Lochem. It creates a coherent public domain, starting from the bridge over the Berkel river, extending through the large glass walls, right into the heart of the building where the public hall is located.
Transparency was another important principle in the design. The curved council-boardroom occupies a central position and displays itself as ‘the heart of democracy.’ Its special shape and openness symbolizes the transparency of local democracy. The citizens have a clear view of the work of their governance and, likewise, the councilors have a wide view of the city with its residents. The large glass entrance opens the building to the city center and all citizens. There are no barriers, everyone is welcome here!
Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action, today launched a pan-European communication campaign in collaboration with more than 70 organisations from across Europe. Under the slogan “A world you like. With a climate you like“ the campaign seeks to put practical solutions at the centre of the climate change debate and demonstrate how climate action can increase welfare and bring economic benefits to European citizens. Across Europe there are abundant examples of intelligent, innovative climate solutions that reduce CO2 pollution while also improving people’s quality of life. A serie of video’s shows ‘success stories’ from every single European country. In Sweden for example, Stockholm’s central rail station converts the body heat of commuters into heat for a nearby office building, reducing not only emissions but also the building’s energy bill by 20-25%. In Denmark, the Gedved school in Horsens saves €30,000 a year on energy thanks to solar power. RAU was given the honor to represent The Netherlands by showing the recently designed Christiaan Huygens College in Eindhoven under the title “Sustainability meets cutting-edge design”.