Osdorp Town Houses, Amsterdam Residential Building Project News, Holland 1960s Property Design

Osdorp Townhouses: Amsterdam Residential Architecture

New Property Development in Amsterdam, The Netherlands design by Atelier Kempe Thill

Location: Osdorp, north Amsterdam, The Netherlands


23 Town Houses in Amsterdam Osdorp, The Netherlands

Design: Atelier Kempe Thill

Community versus individuality: within post-war urbanism

Osdorp Townhouses Amsterdam residential property
photograph : Ulrich Schwarz

25 Aug 2009

Amsterdam-Osdorp Town Houses

Amsterdam Osdorp was built in the 1960s and is since a few years in a process of urban renewal. The ambition of the program is to create a bigger variety of more individual housing types serving the middle class. Big parts of the existing building structures with mostly small apartments are demolished and replaced by bigger, more contemporary homes. One of the important questions that arose during the process is how to deal with the urban and architectural heritage of post-war modernism.

Osdorp Town Houses design by Atelier Kempe Thill
picture : Ulrich Schwarz

The building project is situated in the southern part of the “Masterplan Zuidwest-Kwadrant”. The plan is developed and supervised by the De Nijl – a Rotterdam based firm for urban planning and architecture. Ambition of the master plan is to maintain the typical wide urban street profiles and the green collective courtyards by integrating parking garages under the new buildings.

The building project takes the very relaxed urban setting as direct starting point for the organisation of the houses and tries to find a convincing solution for the parking. The result is a prototypical housing project that supports the more collective scale of Amsterdam Osdorp without suppressing the individual expression of the single homes. Traditional values of modernism get a new interpretation and more contemporary forms of living are stimulated.

Down-to-earth architecture: Economic strategy

The building budget is with 850 € / m2 corresponding to the normal Dutch standard and is relatively limited for Amsterdam conditions. To create a good starting point for the materialisation the following strategy is forming the basis for the design. The span of the town houses is reduced to an acceptable minimum of 4,80m. By doing so the façade surface is in comparison to the standard 20% less. The plan is with a size of 12,50m ca. 30% deeper than the standard. Inside the house a lot of “cheap square meters” are produced and good conditions for energy efficiency are created. The produced spatial confinement is compensated by introduction of a complete glass façade and a double high living room.

The necessary parking garage is not built under ground but at ground level to avoid waterproof concrete constructions and mechanical ventilation. The garage is realised as a cost-effective steel construction and put in front of the concrete construction of the town houses. The roof of the garage is used for private terraces.

New Property Development in Amsterdam by Atelier Kempe Thill Amsterdam-Osdorp Town Houses Amsterdam-Osdorp Town Houses Town Houses in The Netherlands by Atelier Kempe Thill
pictures : Ulrich Schwarz

Drive-in home: prototypical typology

Within the created basis a search is started for an optimum organisation of the house. The living room continues over two levels and is on both sides related to a specific outside space.

The house is accessed from the west side through a front garden with a depth of 6 meters. The garden is surrounded by hedges but has a more public character stimulating the personal contact among the inhabitants. The double high kitchen-cum-living room is directly related to the front garden but also accessed through the private parking garage. An open stair connects the space with the living room on the first floor that is flooded by light from two sides. The living room is protected from views from out the public space by a closed balustrade and is related to an intimate private terrace of 30m2 offering a nice view on the green courtyard.

The second floor is used for sleeping and working rooms. Partitions are movable and allow a variety of spatial organisations. An optional roof space on the third floor is offered during the selling procedure to the future inhabitants.

Informal lightness and dematerialized collage: materialisation

The use of materials is relatively unpretentious and tries to support a more contemporary lightness of living. The inside spaces are extended towards the outside by big glass windows from floor to sealing. Therefore the town house project has no façade in the classical sense but presents itself as skeleton demonstrating the construction. Within the skeleton – behind the glass – the living is exhibited towards the public space. The glass façade is made of slightly reflecting sun protection glass guaranteeing climate comfort through the year without extra outside sunscreens. To save space the entrance door is realised as a special designed sliding door.

The courtyard façade is dominated at the ground floor by the parking garage with an open metal mesh as façade system. In the future the mesh will be grown with ivy. The terraces on top of the garage are separated from each other by synthetic light-transmissive screens. The actual façade of the houses has big windows as well but is partly closed with a façade system of corrugated metal sheets. The same system is used for the head facades.

The interior design is very modest. Corridors are avoided to be able to save space. The stairs are directly positioned into the living room. Very economic standard stairs are used but covered by a special designed balustrade to integrate them into the total composition of the houses.

For economic reasons the project is constructed out of an efficient collage of different building materials and technologies like concrete- and steel construction; aluminium- and wood windows; steel-, aluminium- and wooden doors and different synthetic materials. To create a quiet general impression for the building and to let dominate the space above the material all building elements are coated in RAL 9010. The housing estate gets optically dematerialized and presents itself as a classical white structure forming a perfect background for the living spaces. For this background the IKEA generation gets the opportunity to realise their dreams of a free and light way of living.

New Property in The Netherlands New Town Houses in Holland New Dutch Town Houses Amsterdam-Osdorp Town Houses
pictures : Ulrich Schwarz

This project is presenting a counter pole against the New urbanism movement that is at the moment very dominant in the Netherlands. The project is not the result of sentimental ideas about historic forms but a consequent result of the inner organisation of the living spaces.
Also the prejudices against contemporary architecture are to prove wrong. Modern architecture has not to be more expensive than a more traditional way of building. Good modern architecture is also easy to sell – all houses have been sold within the very short period of just 2 weeks.

Osdorp Housing

Osdorp Town Houses – Building Information

Site: Amsterdam – Osdorp (10 km west of the centre of Amsterdam)

Address: Domela Nieuwenhuisstraat 3 – 29, 1069 SH Amsterdam

Architects: Atelier Kempe Thill architects and planners, Netherlands

Client: DeltaForte BV
Project leader: Mrs. Nathalie van Hoeven
Karspeldreef 2, Postbus 12356, 1100 AJ Amsterdam Zuidoost

Selection Architect: Nov 2001
Commission: Jun 2005
Planning process: Jun 2005 – Feb 2007
Building process: Mar 2007- Feb 2008

Building size:
Site area: 4.200m2
Building size: 5.104m2 brutto, 4.720m2 netto
Building volume: 14.395m3
Building size per house including garage (netto): 149.8m2
Building size per house including garage (brutto): 161.9m2
Roof terrace: 27.9m2

Building budget:
Total building budget: € 3.023.091 (excl. VAT)
Building budget per house: € 131.438 (excl. VAT)
Budget per m2 incl. installation: € 877 /m2 (excl. VAT)

Design Team

Team planning and realisation:

Architect: Atelier Kempe Thill architect and planners, Rotterdam (NL)
Team Atelier Kempe Thill: André Kempe, Oliver Thill, Teun van der Meulen
with Takashi Nakamura

Urban Plan:

Urban planner: De Nijl architecten, Rotterdam – partner-in-charge Endry van Velzen
Supervisor: Endry van Velsen and Michael van Gessel


Building Physics: DGMR Bouw bv, Arnhem
Structural Engineer: ABT, Velp
Service Engineer Electrical & Climate Installations: Atelier Kempe Thill
Quantity Surveyor: BBN, Houten
Tender documents: INBO, Woudenberg
Supervision building site: DeltaForte BV, Amsterdam

General Contractor: Smit’s Bouwbedrijf SBB, Beverwijk

Photographer/Copyright holder: Architektur-Fotografie Ulrich Schwarz
Ulrich Schwarz, Kreuzbergstrasse 27-28, D-10965 Berlin

Rendering: Floris Visualisaties
Herengracht 59, 1015 BC Amsterdam

Osdorp Townhouses images / information from Atelier Kempe Thill

Atelier Kempe Thill

Location: Amsterdam Osdorpm, The Netherlands, western Europe

Osdorp Property

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