Europan Complex

Europan Complex in Amsterdam, Netherlands by Arons en Gelauff Architecten, 2002

The following text and images are contributed by Arons en Gelauff Architecten for their Europan Complex in Amsterdam Osdorp, The Netherlands. Click on images (copyright Vercruysse Dujardin of Belgium) for larger views.

To meet with the ever-present demand for housing, Amsterdam again is looking west. Over the coming twenty years, the post-war extension of Garden city West will be refurbished. In 1996, an international competition was held for a plot bordering the centre of the district with the aim to find new ways of dealing with densification of the existing urban scheme. This project was the winning entry.

The claim to the relative small piece of land (3000 m2) was to build 112 apartments with parking space and 1200 m2 of commercial space. An important objective in the design was the creation of a high quality communal space within the building and to leave a small public square on the southwest of the building.

The stratified architecture reflects the interior functions. The first two layers (maisonettes, parking, commercial space, and storage) are clad in dark brick. On the third floor a large communal garden is surrounded on three sides by apartments. Over a height of seven meters, the fourth side of the court is left out, creating a huge balcony that overlooks the new public square six meters below. From the fourth floor up, dwellings in various types are clad in enamelled glass and untreated timber.

The district is characterized by industrially made, modernist blocks that total around 3,000 identical dwellings. In our project we have included 26 different types of dwellings. Small garden maisonnettes over two and three floors, bigger and smaller corridor duplexes, various varieties of gallery apartments, around-the-corner flats, and extra high terrace houses make a welcome contribution to the bland choice on offer around the project.


1 block: 65 x 55 meters, 8 stories high
112 apartments (all for sale) - 26 different dwelling types
1200 sm commercial space
112 building parking spaces
completion date: 2002