Arthur Bagen

Philips Lighting

diederendirrix en tant que Architectes.

The former Philips Lighting head office now houses more than 600 lofts and apartments. The building’s structure and the concrete staircases were preserved. For the façades we designed a special new solution of large, vertically sliding lower fronts in an eye-catching golden colour.

Small-scale housing in a spacious way
The building measures 43,000 square metres. The residents of the 616 apartments are mostly single starters and expats. A completely new layer with 49 penthouses and spacious terraces has been built on the roof, from which one can enjoy a magnificent view of the city.

The floor height of the lofts is a spacious 4 metres and the fully open façades allow plenty of natural light into the lofts, which measure between 38 to 69 square metres. Most of the lofts have an entresol, accessible via a specially designed small staircase which serves as a hatstand at the same time. The residents rent the lofts fully equipped furnished; all furniture including a fridge, oven and iron is included.

The building contains all that is necessary to make small-scale housing comfortable. The coffee bar on the ground floor eliminates the need for an espresso machine and a desk in the apartment. A small fridge is sufficient, because there is also a supermarket downstairs in the building. The residents can keep in good shape in the health club. And they do their laundry in a communal laundry area.

Horizontally sliding fronts
We opened the façades entirely to bring the maximum amount of natural light into the small houses. The lofts have glass fronts that are 3.3 metres wide and 4 metres high. This way, daylight can penetrate deep into the building.

In collaboration with Reynaers Aluminium we developed a front with an electrically operated sliding window specifically for this project. The idea is based on windows of cruise ships.  The middle of three horizontal parts can slide as a whole in front of the window that lies below. The loft is transformed into a large outdoor area at the push of a button. The fronts are accurately designed in slim profiles.

From concrete gravel to travertine
The cladding of the original building constructed in 1980 consisted of concrete gravel boards. Characteristic, but dark and closed. In the core of the building, where the three wings converge, this original façade cladding can still be found.

The heads of the wings are covered in travertine, a natural stone in a tone of colour matching the concrete gravel. The rest of the façades are designed in gold-coloured aluminium, framing large glass compartments.

From closed enclave to public city park
Straight through the building a public passage connects the Mathildelaan on the north side with the new Emmapark. We also took care of the design of  residential tower Onyx  and Victoria Court.

Lighting shines on the Eindhoven skyline

Reynaers Aluminium en tant que Aluminium Windows and Doors.

The plans of the T-shaped building reveal long corridors with apartments on both sides. ‘The building is relatively deep,’ architect Paul Diederen explains. ‘To make the most of the natural light available, we replaced closed façade parts with large 3.5 by 4 metre windows. This also ensures that the vides (open spaces) found in some of the apartments get enough light. But it’s all about the experience: the power of the glass almost makes you feel insignificant in the environment, allowing you to fully experience it.’ This feeling is reinforced by windows that open vertically. ‘Only the penthouses have balconies, the lofts don’t. But to create something of an outdoor feel, the middle part of the windows can slide right the way down. The bottom part then serves as a balustrade.’

The gold coloured windows with horizontal lines literally add shine to the building. ‘We found an ochre coloured nuance in the gravel concrete on the façade. This tint is now heightened by the windows and new travertine panels,’ Diederen says about the choice of colour.

Technology from the shipping industry

The architectural firm approached Reynaers to supply these special windows. Mark van Rosmalen, architect project adviser at Reynaers: ‘Vertically sliding window systems (CP 130-EVS) of these dimensions are not common in housing construction. Nevertheless, our company had the expertise. This is because we supply these types of windows to cruise ships that sail the Rhine, for instance. At the request of the façade construction company and architect, we developed the sliding system further so that it meets the strict requirements of this project. The windows were fitted horizontally and are electrically operated. The combination of the height of the building and the dimensions and the weight of the windows determined the dimensions of the profiles.’ These are 76 mm deep and offer high wind-load resistance. Diederen: ‘As a result, they look both robust and exciting. Because if you look at the building perpendicularly, the façade is smooth, but look at it from a corner and the windows give the façade extra depth.’

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