Inspired by the work of the Dutch modernist architect Jos Bedaux, this Faculty Club is ‘a multipurpose pavilion for the academic staff and their guests’ realised by the Rotterdam-based practice Shift architecture urbanism. The neat, beautifully balanced single-storey building has been completed earlier this year and its stylishly minimalist interiors include an 80-seat restaurant, an airy overlooking-the-forest lounge, two conference rooms, a kitchen and a number of utility rooms.
From the architects:
‘The Faculty Club is designed as a carved-out-monolith, one simple box in which transparency and massiveness melt together. The central restaurant is carved out from the centre, creating a tunnel-effect in the front view. In order to strengthen its solitaire character, the building is lifted from the ground. The height difference is bridged by outside stairs and a ramp integrated within the front façade.
‘Each façade has only one window. By recessing each window, outdoor spaces are created within the front and rear façades. These mark the entrance in front and form a large covered terrace in the back. The simplicity and plasticity of the three-dimensional window treatment further contributes to the building’s sculptural qualities.’
‘By creating a strong formal relation between the existing university buildings and the new Faculty Club, an ensemble of omni-directional solitaires is created. This enables one to recognize the Faculty Club as part of the university, despite its peripheral forest location and exclusive program.
‘The construction principles of the Faculty Club are deceptively simple. In order to emphasize contrasting space and mass, the structure, installations and details are integrated within walls and floors. The starting point for the engineering was the visual absence of technique.’
‘The monumental modernism of Jos Bedaux served as a frame of reference. Bedaux designed the first – still the best – buildings for the university in the sixties.’