2_2_DiscoverBenelux_11_November_2014_Q9_Scan Magazine 1 06/11/2014 23:06 Page 43
Discover Benelux | Special Theme | Dutch Architecture & Interiors
Dok Architecten create contemporary designs without following current trends. MAIN PHOTO: Scheepvaartmuseum. TOP CENTRE: Lex van Deldednbrug. MIDDLE CENTRE: Mediatheek Delft. BOTTOM CENTRE: Noordpoort. TOP RIGHT: Stadskwartier Nieuwegein.
Architecture touches people, invokes emotions and changes feelings.” Van der Pol thinks that the connection to the environment is very important for the design. “What is already there? Not only the site we are designing for, but also the neighbourhood. It is very important to take a good look and listen very well. No building or place has just one function. Therefore the design must add these different functions. It must be liveable 24/7 for different uses. By looking and listening carefully, we can design a building which complements everything in and around it.”
der Pol gives it its own signature. “In Delft we created a multimedia library in a typical ’80s, concrete office. The library has become a vibrant place to meet and work together. The concrete seems to be a limitation, but it is the limitation that makes it more interesting.”
Look and listen Trends in architecture are not so interesting for Van der Pol. “Architecture exists so we can create beautiful things. We are friendly intruders into what the mainstream world wants. A building is not ‘just a stack of bricks’, that would make it emotionless.
Dok Architecten always uses sustainable materials and seeks out sustainable solutions. An example of this is the design for a school in Amsterdam, which has been entirely constructed in timber from sustainable forestry. Van der Pol: “We have to take care of what we have. Together with everyone involved we seek solutions that are climate friendly as well as energy efficient. These are things like climate control within the building, buffer zones between climates, and short warm-up times.”
It connected two neighbourhoods in Amsterdam, which were previously divided by water. Not only were they physically divided, also mentally. We wanted to connect these neighbourhoods, and so we created a public square as a bridge.” Van der Pol feels that the new connection and improved surroundings also help the liveability of the neighbourhoods. “It became a place to meet each other, it connected the two areas.”
The DOK 100 Next year, Dok Architecten will finalise its 100th completed project. A remarkable number states Van der Pol, “The economic climate nowadays is not easy. The projects may be smaller, but there will always be interest and time for unique projects, of which we are very proud.” www.dokarchitecten.nl
Van der Pol also thinks that a good climate improves the social heart of a building or location. “For example, we’ve created a bridge for pedestrians and cyclists.
Issue 11 | November 2014 | 43
Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.