WoZoCo Apartments

WoZoCo Apartments, Amsterdam, Netherlands, MVRDV
Project year: 1997
Address: Ookmeerweg, AMSTERDAM, Netherlands
Latitude/Longitude: 52.363874,4.794454


Big increases in density is what the Western Garden Cities of Amsterdam built in the 1950s and 1960s had to confront, increases that continue to threaten their open green spaces, the most important quality of these areas. A block of 100 apartments for people over 55 years was proposed to mark the end of a facility strip for the elderly, as part of this operation.

To still provide an adequate degree of sunlight penetrate the rooms, only 87 of the 100 units could be accommodated within the block. Where could the remaining 13 dwellings be positioned? The open space would have been further reduced, if the decision was to put the dwellings elsewhere on the site. Now, the remaining 13 units from the north façade are literally suspended in the air, by ‘cantilevering’ them. The North-South dwellings in the block are completed with the hanging East-West orientated types that offer a view over the adjacent polder. By hanging the extra units on the north façade, the ground plane is kept as open and green as possible. A prototypic increase in density for the garden cities was achieved.

Text description provided by the architects.

Client: Het Oosten Housing Association, Amsterdam
Project/program: 7.500m², 100 apartments for the elderly
Budget: 10 million Dutch Guilders, about 4.5 million Euro
Design team: Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs and Nathalie de Vries, Willem Timmer, Arjan Mulder and Frans de Witte
Constractor: Intervam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Structure: Pieters Bouwtechniek, Haarlem, The Netherlands
Building physics: DGMR, Arnhem, The Netherlands
Building advisors: Bureau Bouwkunde, Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Contributed by MVRDV