November 10, 2017

A bright future for ministry building in The Hague

Filed under: Architecture,Sustainability by Orangemaster @ 9:59 am

Saskia Simon and Kees van Casteren from OMA, (The Office for Metropolitan Architecture), a Dutch architectural firm based in Rotterdam, co-founded by Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, explain the revamped architecture of a building at Rijnstraat 8 in The Hague in the English-language video below.

According to the video’s description, upon completion in 1992, Rijnstraat 8, the former Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM) building represented an innovative office typology as well as an example of sustainability. Today the building, designed by in the 1980s, no longer offers the flexibility and openness required of a contemporary office space. In collaboration with the original architect, Jan Hoogstad, OMA developed an integrated concept for the building based on a renewal of its existing architectural qualities.

Although Amsterdam is the capital in the Netherlands, The Hague houses the government, but in true Dutch style, that doesn’t mean buildings have to be boring. In this case, a building was modified to become much more transparent – literally. And the video gives you a nice view of The Hague from a tall building, as if you were there.


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April 23, 2010

The Big M gets the thumbs up from The Hague

Filed under: Architecture by Orangemaster @ 1:28 pm

What started way back in 2002 has finally been approved by The Hague’s city council: world-renowned architect Rem Koolhaas plans to build a 93-metre high building in front of the city’s central station as a new city landmark. The plans include three tapered towers, two with a total of 179 apartments and one for offices that meet and merge at the top, encompassing Koningen Julianaplein (big town square) on two sides. And it looks like a big M.

The Dutch press always likes to inform their audiences how much things cost. In this case, NRC tells us the ‘wowie’ building (that gives me a Grande Arche at La Défense in Paris feeling, but then a Dutch version) is estimated to cost 300 million euro and expected to be finished in 2015.


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April 25, 2009

Koolhaas Prada Transformer opens in Korea

Filed under: Architecture by Orangemaster @ 9:57 am


Today marks the opening of yet another Prada building designed by Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas of Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), the Prada Transformer, a portable, shape-shifting cultural pavilion located in Seoul, Korea.

Having sat down and really enjoyed a recent television show/lecture with Koolhaas, I listened to him explain that the building could physically be transformed for four main uses: art exhibitions, special events, cinema theatre and a section called ‘waist down’. The idea is that instead of rearranging the interior of the building, a big crane has to reposition the Prada Transformer like a giant puzzle.

Some say, nonsense, what a waste of time, energy and resources, others thinks it’s brilliant. On telly, one of the students from the Delft University of Technology studying architecture said that all his teachers refer to him as ‘God’. He was also criticised amicably by the host of the show who said he is always in a rush to get somewhere to which he retorted that by rushing and getting to places faster, he has more time for himself once he arrives.

(Link and image:

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April 23, 2008

Rem Koolhaas to design Prada museum

Filed under: Architecture,Design by Orangemaster @ 8:37 am

Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas has been asked to design a museum for Prada’s art collection, according to the website of Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), Koolhaas’ architectural firm.

Designer Miuccia Prada and her spouse Patrizio Bertelli have bought hundreds of modern art pieces over the years and need a place to display them. They have found a place in Milan where Koolhaas is going to design three new buildings, including a tower with exhibition halls. Koolhaas has already designed the Prada flagship store in New York City (see photo).


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