Thanks to input from 320 Rabobank employees, the new Rabobank Westelijke Mijnstreek Advice Centre in Sittard, The Netherlands has a collaborative and knowledge-sharing environment in the form of workplaces available to the public, and employees, in a vast auditorium space.
“The entire ground floor including the restaurant is open to the public. Both employees and customers can use the workplaces in the auditorium, just as in a modern public library.” says Mecanoo.
“The intent underlying the design is the development of a cooperative bank extending its arms invitingly to society, located on a small hill. Upon entry under the curved ceiling with sculptural skylights, you can survey, in one glance, the whole building and your curiosity is further ignited for activities on the upper floors.”
“These are designed as staggering terraces that meander around the loft as a white ribbon. They invite you to take the zigzagging stairs and not the elevator. The focal point of the central hall is the auditorium which, remarkably, was not in the original brief.”
“In this area, Mecanoo designed a staircase tribune that accommodates flexible workspaces. Brushed-oak paneled walls that wrap the interior of the building form a unity with the material of this tribune and its workspace furnishings. The brushed oak panelled walls in the building form a unity with the tribune and furniture. Here, a transparent curtain with different shades of silver and blue designed by Petra Blaisse of Inside Outside runs on a 60-meter long track that winds above the tribune.”
“The upper office floors are only accessible to staff via a pass system on the first floor. Here you can choose whichever workplace suits your demands: a small room for concentration, a more spacious room for working in a team, a large zigzagging table where you can informally work and chat, as well as open areas for meeting and exchanging ideas, individual work stations along the mezzanine, niches in the oak wall and both small and large conference rooms for gatherings.”
Programme: 5,375 m2 advice centre with a large variety of flexible workspaces and meeting rooms including restaurant and call centre
Client: Rabobank Westelijke Mijnstreek, Sittard
Structural engineer: Bartels Ingenieursbureau B.V., Eindhoven
Electrical and mechanical engineer, acoustics, building physics and fire safety consultant: Nelissen Ingenieursbureau B.V., Eindhoven
Light consultant: Studio Rublek, Schiphol
City council consultant: LPB Sight, Nieuwegein
Technical landscape consultant: Plangroep Heggen BV, Born
Costs consultants and project management: Duckers & de Cock, Eindhoven