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“Of course, artificial lighting is also essential. We were able to combine the benefits of both by introducing daylight-controlled artificial lighting. The system of dynamic lighting we used actually ensures that the artificial lighting mirrors daylight. Constantly changing in subtle ways. In this way, we create an ambiance that is pleasant for work. You know, a building only really comes to life when it is lit. It is light that makes a building interesting. Yet it mustn’t be intrusive. A building should not suddenly change when the lights are switched on. This is disturbing. One project we undertook was a car showroom. Now cars are designed to look their best out of doors. So the challenge was to create an environment in which we brought the outdoors inside. A careful combination of natural and artificial light plus a well chosen finishing made this possible. “ The Westraven Tower leans heavily on the use of the grid. Did Schleurholts find this restrictive? “I think it is important to include the grid as early in the design stage as possible. By using it, you design in flexibility – it gives you enormous freedom for designing the interior space and adapting it at a later date. After all, a building needs to be able to change. By using a grid you make it possible to change the building as the need arises. “Another advantage of using the grid was that we were able to design high-quality ceiling units. Thanks to the high repetition of these elements, standardised high-end elements could be used within the strict budget parameters. In these, we incorporated lighting, air conditioning, loudspeakers – all the modern technologies that are essential in an office building today. But we were able to make them unobtrusive. People shouldn’t be bothered by technique. It is there to serve them, not to take centre stage. “In our design, we made use of two different ceiling elements – one for the office space, the other for the corridors. The grid provided structure, yet gave us the opportunity of designing in deviations to the grid which makes the building fascinating. When you drive past the building in the evening, you see the grid clearly. The lighting accentuates it. But you are also aware of the deviations. It is much more interesting. “ Now that the office building is in use, Ronald Schleurholts is still satisfied with the results he achieved in Westraven Tower.

Client Rijksgebouwendienst (Dutch Ministry of Housing and Construction)

“I certainly believe we produced the best design possible within the parameters set. But more importantly, the reactions from the people who work there – and they are, after all, the most important critics – have been uniformly positive. The initial resistance – the idea that everybody would be subjected to social control in such an open and transparent environment – has disappeared. People now feel comfortable, relaxed. And I am convinced that much of this is due to the use of light. It certainly provides a stimulus to continue along the same road in the future.”

Architect Ronald Schleurholts, Jan Pesman CEPEZED Architects Delft, The Netherlands Lighting consultants Het Lichtatelier - Grontmij Technisch Management Amersfoort, The Netherlands Philips LiDAC Benelux Light sources Philips TL5 2700 and 6500K Luminaires Philips TBS 375, Lightmaster Modular system Lighting scenario’s Dynamic lighting; summer and winter scenario, temperature limiting 25 ºC, minimum lighting intensity, EN-12464

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Profile for Luminous – International Lighting Magazine

Luminous 1 | Grid Stifles Imagination?  

Grid Stifles Imagination? | Piazza San Magno, Legnano, Italy | Martin Lupton, London,United Kingdom | Las Palmas building, Rotterdam, The N...

Luminous 1 | Grid Stifles Imagination?  

Grid Stifles Imagination? | Piazza San Magno, Legnano, Italy | Martin Lupton, London,United Kingdom | Las Palmas building, Rotterdam, The N...