The De Rotterdam building is a vertical city comprising three interconnected mixed-use towers, which accommodate offices, apartments, a hotel, conference facilities, shops, restaurants, and cafes.OMA, the architecture firm conceptualized the building design to be more in harmony with the urban density and diversity in terms of the program and the form. The three towers of 150 m height are arranged in a subtly irregular cluster, while the gross floor area of approximately 162,000 Sq m is organized into distinct blocks: the fitness facilities, restaurants, and conference rooms.
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De Rotterdam is conceived as a vertical city: three interconnected mixed-use towers accommodating offices, apartments, a hotel, conference facilities, shops, restaurants, and cafes. The project began in 1997. Construction started at the end of 2009, with completion in 2013. The towers are part of the ongoing redevelopment of the old harbour district of Wilhelminapier, next to the Erasmus Bridge, and aim to reinstate the vibrant urban activity – trade, transport, leisure – once familiar to the neighbourhood. De Rotterdam is named after one of the ships on the Holland America Line, which departed from the Wilhelminapier in decades past, carrying thousands of Europeans emigrating to the US.
The three towers reach 150m high, with a gross floor area of approximately 162,000m2, making De Rotterdam the largest building in the Netherlands. OMA’s architectural concept produces more than sheer size: urban density and diversity – both in the program and the form – are the guiding principles of the project. De Rotterdam’s stacked towers are arranged in a subtly irregular cluster that refuses to resolve into a singular form and produces intriguing new views from different perspectives. Similarly, the definition of the building changes according to its multiple uses internally.
The various programs of this urban complex are organized into distinct blocks, providing both clarity and synergy: residents and office workers alike can use the fitness facilities, restaurants, and conference rooms of the hotel. And these private users of the building have contact with the general public on the ground floor, with its waterfront cafes. The lobbies for the offices, hotel, and apartments are located in the plinth – a long elevated hall that serves as a general traffic hub for De Rotterdam’s wide variety of users.
Rotterdam's Vertical City reaches unparalleled heights of achievement
Towering 150 m and occupying a total of 160,000 Sq m, the building’s exterior is constructed entirely out of glass which lets in the light from every angle. Vetrotech contributed very significantly to the success of this project as they supplied a total of approximately 50,000m² of glass for the building weighing an extraordinary 230,000 tons. They also supplied the fire-resistant Contraflam® and Contraflam® LITE glass in various forms, offering tailor-made solutions with safety as the paramount concern.
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It took four years to construct the biggest building in the Netherlands – De Rotterdam, or Vertical City, on the bank of the River Maas. With ground space at such a premium, there was really only one direction in which to build: up.
Although the ground area only takes up the space of a football field (110m by 60m), De Rotterdam is a building of mammoth proportions. And with most of the exterior made out of glass, it commands phenomenal views across the city.
An incredibly challenging project on so many levels, designing De Rotterdam demanded the talents of the legendary architect Rem Koolhaas, founding father of OMA. Such is the pedigree of this architectural practice with world-class credentials that they now have offices in Rotterdam, New York, Beijing and Hong Kong.
Ten years in the making
Koolhaas spent ten years developing the finished design. Looking at its multi-functionality, it is not difficult to see why it took so long from inception to completion. It is also a fascinating construction in its own right, containing distinct areas that are also harmoniously joined together.
“Its fascination comes from the fact that, despite being an undoubtedly large building, it’s actually formed of small parts that come together to form an exciting whole,” explains Koolhaas. “This is in contrast to so many other buildings in Rotterdam that are just singular entities. De Rotterdam has an ambitious agenda: to be a residential building, a place of work, a recreation centre and a hotel. For every component, we looked at how its circumstances, situation and views could be best utilised. As a result, every part has a different character.”
A mammoth construction with staggering statistics
While the building itself is incredibly impressive to look at, the statistics are simply baffling. Towering 150m into the sky and occupying a total of 160,000m², there are 240 high-specification apartments in the West Tower, spread over an area measuring 35,000m². These are so impressively designed and equipped that residents feel as if they are living in a design magazine!
In the Mid Tower and part of the East Tower, office space occupies some 60,000m². And in the remaining part of the East Tower, there is a four-star hotel with 285 luxurious rooms, occupying a further 19,000m². This is the latest addition to the nhow hotel group, joining those in Berlin and Milan.
For residents, visitors and workers alike, 25,000m² of garage space offers parking for 684 cars. Beyond this, there is a further 3,500m² of conference rooms, shops, fitness centres, restaurants and cafés overlooking the chic Waterfront area. In short, it is easy to see why it is called the Vertical City; it has everything!
Beautiful, contemporary, safe and awash with light
With the exterior constructed almost entirely out of glass – bathing De Rotterdam in light from every angle – Vetrotech contributed very significantly to the success of this daring project. With the building weighing an extraordinary 230,000 tons, we supplied a total of approximately 50,000m² of glass. Ensuring ultimate fire safety is a real challenge with a building of this magnitude.
To meet this brief, we supplied our fire-resistant Contraflam® and Contraflam® LITE glass in various forms, offering tailor-made solutions with safety as the paramount concern. A truly magnificent feat of design and engineering, De Rotterdam is now clearly one of the most eye-catching and impressive glass buildings in the Netherlands.
KONE JumpLift construction time elevators were used in the building. The contours of the building are etched into the stainless steel faceplates of the car operating panels, which also features vertical white LEDs that light up with every passing floor. Such cutting edge technology is matched by the regenerative drive elevators, which return power back to the grid. "Together with KONE's experts, the team decided to install three KONE JumpLift solutions which played a very important role.” says Jan van't Westeinde, Senior Sustainability Manager at MAB.
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De Rotterdam is the largest mixed-use building – and one of the greenest – in the Netherlands, and cutting-edge technologies were utilized from the start.
Manhattan on the Maas
Conceived as a city within a city, De Rotterdam is part of an ambitious urban revitalization plan aimed at transforming the historic port into a lively waterfront hub of commerce, housing and leisure.
The project took four years and involved 600 workers moving up and down the towers several times a day. Successful execution boiled down to well-planned logistics with the use of our KONE JumpLift construction time elevators.
To achieve the desired aesthetic for the elevators, we collaborated closely with the designers and a local cab decoration supplier. The contours of the building are etched into the stainless steel faceplates of the car operating panels, which also feature vertical white LEDs that light up with every passing floor.
Sustainability was as important as aesthetics as De Rotterdam is one of the greenest buildings in the Netherlands. All offices are energy class A and the buildings are heated and cooled using the water of the Maas River.
Such cutting edge technology is matched by our regenerative drive elevators, which return power back to the grid.
"Together with KONE's experts, we decided to install three KONE JumpLift solutions which played a very important role. We were able to deliver the largest mixed-use project ever built in the Netherlands exactly on schedule," says Jan van't Westeinde, Senior Sustainability Manager at MAB, the developer of De Rotterdam.
De Rotterdam, the most densely populated piece of real estate in the Netherlands
Bolidt installed a variety of synthetic applications, including flooring systems from the Bolidtop® range in the building. From an innovative bactericidal flooring system in the Erasmus Medical Centre to the high-quality surface course on the Erasmus Bridge and the protective concrete coatings and floor finishes in De Kuip stadium, Bolidt has provided the solutions and contributed to many projects in Rotterdam.
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At the end of November, De Rotterdam was delivered less than 4 years after construction had started. The building, designed by OMA/Rem Koolhaas, is the largest multifunctional building in the Netherlands.
From the beginning of 2014, a wide variety of employees, including City of Rotterdam staff, will start moving into the 60,000 m2 of office space. Once joined by the tenants and owners of 240 apartments, hotel guests (285 rooms) and visitors of the building’s restaurants and cafés, the number of people present on Rotterdam’s Wilhelmina Pier each day will have doubled. Located in this area dubbed ‘Manhattan on the Maas’, De Rotterdam will inhabit both the most densely built-up and the most densely populated piece of land in the Netherlands. Conceived as a vertical city, De Rotterdam is well on its way to becoming just that.
The bright, 8.5-metre-high ground floor hall with the reception desk and central elevators spans the entire width of the building. The next six storeys make up a solid base that supports 3 transparent towers placed at about 7 metres apart. As a result, the 150-metre-high complex does not look like one building, but rather like a New York-style city block. Because of the building’s glass façade, each floor has floor-to-ceiling De Rotterdam windows. These do not just offer panoramic views of Rotterdam, but also of the Erasmus Bridge (featuring a high-quality surface course from Bolidt), which connects the city centre on the north bank with the bustling Kop van Zuid district.
The closeness of OMA founder and architect Rem Koolhaas’ relationship with Rotterdam is not only apparent in the name of the building, which derives from the ship bringing emigrants from this pier to New York between 1873 and 1970. When he returned from having lived in America for many years, he decided to move OMA’s headquarters to Rotterdam: “My instinct told me that Rotterdam would provide the best breeding ground for the type of architecture we strive to create and I was vaguely aware that Rotterdam, ever since the Second World War really, simply because much of the city had been destroyed, had continually fed and shaped the whole idea of modernity in the Netherlands.”
Bolidt shares Koolhaas’ enthusiasm for the city. With its office located only a stone’s throw from Rotterdam, Bolidt feels strongly connected to this city. Bolidt has not just installed a variety of synthetic applications, including flooring systems from the Bolidtop® range, in De Rotterdam. There are many projects in Rotterdam, to which Bolidt has contributed. Whether it involved the innovative bactericidal flooring system in the Erasmus Medical Centre, the abovementioned high-quality surface course on the Erasmus Bridge or the protective concrete coatings and floor finishes in De Kuip stadium, Bolidt has given its all. Bolidt, No limits… in Rotterdam, nor anywhere else!
In De Rotterdam project, Open Cell Ceiling systems are used which creates a spacious appearance, ideal for the interiors. They make it easy to create different modules in one ceiling and are ideal for very small plenum depths. This versatile product is available in 3 profile heights, 7 modular cell dimensions and two methods of suspension. Panels in standard sizes 600 x 600mm and 600 x 1200mm are lightweight yet strong and produced from 100% recyclable 0.4/0.5 mm aluminum.
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De Rotterdam is a building on the Wilhelminapier in Rotterdam and designed in 1998 by Rem Koolhaas.
For this project Hunter Douglas choose Cell ceiling.
More information about Cell Ceilings, please consult Hunter Douglas website. (see link below)
All kitchens and baths for the 44 Floors of the building were fitted out in cooperation with Bulthaup, Villeroy & Boch, Grohe and Mosa. Hand wash basins, table wash basins, cabinet wash basins as well as wall-mounted toilets, the rectangular Subway bathtubs of sanitary acrylic provided for the luxurious bathing comfort. The use of Villeroy & Boch sanitary objects of the Subway 2.0 collection features clear linear forms, diverse forms and color variations to appeal to the modern target group with its minimalistic, well thought-out design that focuses on functionality.
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44 Floors – living at the highest level The 240 exclusive two- to four-room apartments and penthouse apartments are located in the West Tower between the 7th and 44th floors. The façade of the complex is completely glazed and all of the apartments feature floor-to-ceiling windows to give the tenants “their own piece of the sky”, as the image brochure for the project claims. All kitchens and baths were fitted out in cooperation with Bulthaup, Villeroy & Boch, Grohe and Mosa and therefore appeal to a modern, urban clientèle that values comfort and a luxurious lifestyle. This comfort is also achieved in the bath – which despite the simple design conveys the feeling of high-quality wellness – by the use of Villeroy & Boch sanitary objects of the Subway 2.0 collection. The collection features clear linear forms and diverse form and colour variations to appeal to the modern target group with its minimalistic, well thought-out design that focuses on functionality.
The “44 Floors” were fitted out with hand wash basins, table wash basins and cabinet wash basins as well as wall-mounted toilets from the collection. The rectangular Subway bathtubs of sanitary acrylic provide for luxurious bathing comfort.
Despite, or perhaps because of the high building density, the “De Rotterdam” complex is efficient and sustainable. The goal of becoming the Netherlands’ most sustainable new construction project was achieved by the high density and combination of functions, by the design and construction as well as by the installations and energy supply. Water from the river Maas, for example, is used for heating and cooling of the building. “De Rotterdam” has already been recognised with a number of awards.
Exclusive living in the largest multi-functional building in the Netherlands The “44 Floors” in Rotterdam is the residential West Tower in the building complex “De Rotterdam” completed at the end of 2013. The multi-functional building on the Wilhelmina Pier was designed by OMA, the office founded by Rem Koolhaas, as a vertical city offering a total floor space area of 160,000 m2 with offices, restaurants, a hotel and leisure facilities, in addition to the “44 Floors” apartments and parking spaces. The exquisite luxury apartments were fitted out with sanitary objects of the Subway collection from Villeroy & Boch.
The Wilhelmina Pier in Rotterdam had its historical peak at the end of the 19th century when innumerable emigrants set out from there for a better future in Canada or the USA. Since the early 1970s only cruise liners have docked at the pier. The area was increasingly taken over by offices, apartments, restaurants and cultural institutions. In recent years the former harbour district, as the site of an ambitious urban development project, has turned into an international hot spot that attracts trendsetters from around the world.
De Rotterdam – a city within the city The multi-functional building “De Rotterdam” with its three glass-walled towers is the new eye-catcher in the port of Rotterdam. The icon building is visible from afar and offers an excellent view of the harbour district and the city from its high-up offices and apartments. The three 150 metre towers stand only seven metres apart on a shared six-storey plinth, which houses public functions such as cafés, restaurants, fitness facilities and a hotel. The building complex was developed by the Netherlands’ well-known Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), founded by Rem Koolhaas, and implemented by Rabo Vastgoedgroep. On an area of 110 x 60 metres, which is about the size of a football field, the building rises to 44 floors with a total floor space area of 160,000 m2. The complex is therefore not only the most densely built-up piece of property in the Netherlands, but with an average of 5,000 people occupying the building at a given time, also the most frequented. Altogether “De Rotterdam” comprises 60,000 m2 of office space, 1,500 m2 of restaurants and catering services, one four-star hotel with 280 rooms, various conference and event rooms as well 670 parking spaces. One of the three high-rise towers, the “44 Floors”, additionally contains 240 owner-occupied and rental apartments. The entire complex is light, transparent and spaciously designed. Likewise the 8.50 metre high entrance hall, which extends the entire width of the building and is furnished with exclusive materials such as natural stone floors and travertine wall panels.
The project team used iPads and an online feedback system for the final check-ups to reduce printouts and paper reports. The jacking technique helped the STRABAG Belgium NV / Züblin Nederland B.V. to realize that the building has dropped 20 cm during the construction period with differential differences of 14 cm.All building materials were delivered according to the “Just in Time” principle, every supplier made an online appointment, received a SLOT time and the materials were directly delivered on the right floor. The use of public power generation with city heating, bio oil-fired combined heat and power system, water from the River Maas to cool the building, the ventilation systems to recover heat, the high output lighting and daylight switching using movement sensors, makes the structure an energy efficient one.
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De Rotterdam is a multifunctional development at the Wilhelminapier on the Maas at Rotterdam. The project consists of three linked 149 m high towers. This “Design & Build” project covers a total area of 162,000 m² including: high-quality offices (72,000 m²), 220 luxury apartments, a four-star hotel with 280 bedrooms, extensive conference facilities, shops, cafes, restaurants, fitness facilities, 684 parking spaces and cultural functions. The building has been erected in the form of a vertical town where 3,000 to 4,000 people will live, work, shop and relax every day.
This unique, sustainable and multifunctional building is an energy-efficient building, with frugal consumption and maximum use of daylight and an optimal air conditioning system. This is a smart design with innovative applications that is flexible and easy to split up. Use will be made here of public power generation with city heating and there will be a bio oil-fired combined heat and power system. Water from the River Maas will be used to cool the building. The ventilation systems will also be used to recover heat, and there will be high output lighting and daylight switching using movement sensors. This project is an example of logistic excellence: all building materials are delivered according to the “Just in Time” principle. Every supplier made an online appointment, received a SLOT time and the materials were directly delivered on the right floor. The building has dropped 20 cm during the construction period with differential differences of 14 cm. STRABAG Belgium nv / Züblin Nederland B.V. realized this using the jacking technique: measuring of settlement differences between jacking columns and their adjacent columns by means of a monitoring system. The towers jump out on height of 80 meters with a difference of 8 meters. The project team used iPads and an online feedback system for the final check-ups to reduce printouts and paper reports. 4500 employees realized this impressive project.
In the photography book ‘Rotterdam dynamic town (1959)’, Dutch photographer Cas Oorthuys captured the growing self-awareness of his countrymen during the post-war reconstruction period, also, he photographed the HAL ships departing to the New World from the Wilhelminapier. By following the construction for 4 years, Ruud Sies will present a photographic report on a very special project in the development of Rotterdam, one that also forms a link to the Wilhelminapier as a historic spot.
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This photo documentary shows a unique development on the shores of the river Maas on the Wilhelminapier in Rotterdam. The construction of The Rotterdam. The Rotterdam is a unique multifunctional building, designed by OMA (Office for Metropolitan Architecture) of Rem Koolhaas. Its remarkable mix of functions makes this building a true vertical city.
In the photography book ‘Rotterdam dynamic town (1959)’, Dutch photographer Cas Oorthuys captured the growing self-awareness of his countrymen during the post-war reconstruction period; a hardworking nation on the road to a booming economy.
He photographed the HAL ships departing to the New World from the Wilhelminapier, the same spot where The Rotterdam, named after one of the passenger ships, currently is erected.
In the 30s of the last century, Lewis W. Hine photographed the construction of the Empire State Building, powerful symbol of the New World, an inspiring document through his personal approach, both because of the daring locations from which he took his photos and his view of his subject: the men that built the structure.
The image of The Rotterdam bears exalted witness to the creativity of mankind, the inclusive vision of life in a metropolis and the state-of-the-art technological progress of the 21st century. Ever-expanding imaginative strength as an answer to the complexity of today’s worldwide community.
By following the construction for 4 years Ruud Sies will present a photographic report on a very special project in the development of Rotterdam, one that also forms a link to the Wilhelminapier as a historic spot.
' No matter how state-of-the-art contemporary construction may be, building continues to be the work of humans. It is the people at the building site that invest their brains and muscles, their passion and their creativity, using tried-and-true, simple tools to guarantee solidity. They remain hidden behind the fences of the site; I want to make them visible' Ruud Sies.