Benthem Crouwel Architects
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Project Year
Train stations
Jannes Linders


Benthem Crouwel Architects as architect

Stationseiland, the island on which Amsterdam Central Station stands, is to be transformed into an efficient and attractive public transport hub that will really take flight with the arrival of the North-South metro line, the high-speed rail link and a new bus terminus. The station square (Stationsplein) will be the preserve of pedestrians and trams, having been purged of obstacles of all kinds and paved with granite for permanence. Cyclists approaching along the western and eastern flanks can access the cycle shelters directly. Motorized through traffic has its own underpass along the waters of the IJ, across which the new easy-to-read bus terminus looks. All this means that the Prins Hendrikkade can be traffic calmed with a crossroads-free pedestrian route between the station and Dam Square. The historic harbour front (Open Havenfront) has been widened to stress the island setting and give the tour boats plenty of space. Altogether, Amsterdam will get the gateway it deserves. P.H.C. Cuypers' old railway station is upgraded to a traffic hub with clearly demarcated zones for meeting and greeting, services, information, transfer, transport and commerce. This gives it clarity of organization so that travellers can find their way around with ease. The new IJ Hall presents a natural counterpart to Cuypers' original station concourse and makes the connection with the new neighbourhoods along the IJ and in Amsterdam Noord. Here, travellers can effortlessly transfer between bus, metro, train, boat/ferry and taxi. There is space for larger shops and the hospitality sector that can also be reached directly from outside. The view across the water makes the IJ Hall very special indeed, a city lobby where you can meet, wait or shop. Not just a transport building, the station is a destination in itself. The IJ Hall is easily reached from the IJboulevard and the waterside plaza and jetties by the rapidly swelling traffic on the IJ. Two new roofed station courtyards to east and west of the IJ Hall are for collecting travellers or leave-taking and also contain the taxi rank. The slow route for cyclists from the city centre connects well with the cycle path along the IJ and the ferries to Amsterdam Noord. A new bicycle garage has been added on the north-western side. The new bus terminus on the IJ side feeds directly into the train and metro transport networks, with bus and train platforms set flush and locked together. An almost entirely glazed fourth roof covers the pedestrian precinct along the IJ. The new roof weds well with the muscle of the 19th-century structures of which it is a contemporary reading, underscoring the quality of the existing station building. With the new 365-metre-long station roof, Amsterdam Noord finally has its own countenance and is drawn by way of the IJ Hall into the city centre experience. So the revamped Stationseiland acts as a bridging piece between the old city and the urbanized water landscape of the IJ.

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