comments 4

Studio Gang in Amsterdam

Slate Asset Management, RAD Marketing, and the top producing brokers for One Delisle were fortunate enough to be able to tour a Studio Gang-designed project in Amsterdam today called the Q Residences. A huge thanks to the developers — Kroonenberg Groep and Neoo — for their time and hospitality this afternoon.

Here are two photos of the exterior:

The building, which is a mixed-income rental apartment, is still under construction, and occupancy is expected sometime this fall. The structure is poured-in-place concrete, but the balconies were all pre-fabricated and installed on site. You can tell this by looking near the top of the above photo.

Here are a few other interesting takeaways from the tour:

– 40% of the complex is social housing (which is housed in an entirely separate but similarly impressive building); this is a mandatory requirement

– The land is owned by the city and is being leased to the developers; the lease rate was discounted to account for the social housing requirement

– The entire building uses in-floor heating and cooling, so there are no ducts or bulkheads in any of the suites (slabs are all about 300mm to accommodate this)

– The balconies all have a rainwater collection system, which is mounted and concealed on the exterior of the building (it rarely goes below freezing here I am told)

– The parking ratio for cars is very roughly about 0.5 per unit and the bicycle parking ratio is very roughly 3 per unit (remember this is the bicycle capital of the world)

– Structural system is mostly shear walls; they also have some post-tensioning in the slabs

– Less reliance on metal wall studs; instead they use a more expensive block-like system that offers more rigidity and better sound attenuation (I will look for the exact specification)

– There is also this odd/interesting requirement that all of the suites have an operable window that can provide both natural ventilation and sound attenuation; in other words, it needs to let air in and block sound at the same time

Here’s what that looks like at Q Residences:

We don’t have a requirement like this in Toronto and so that’s why I used the word odd. We have ventilation and sound requirements, but they don’t need to be solved simultaneously in this same way.

Why I also think this is interesting is because I think it speaks to a greater reliance on natural ventilation over active mechanical systems. In Toronto, the underlying thinking is that if it’s too hot and noisy, it’s just a matter of shutting your windows and turning on the AC.

Of course, we obviously we have to manage around a very different climate, so I don’t mean this as a criticism of Toronto codes. It’s just an observation.

If you aren’t familiar with the Q Residences, or the work of Neoo and Kroonenberg, I would encourage you to search around online. The project is gorgeous and so is the rest of their work.

4 Comments

  1. Tomas Mashidlauskas

    Kroonenberg Group is also doing work in Toronto at 1200 Bay St. It will be interesting to see what is achieved in our market.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Tomas Mashidlauskas

    Kroonenberg Group is also doing work in Toronto at 1200 Bay St. It will be interesting to see what they achieve in our market. Amsterdam is a wonderful city with many great lessons for Toronto.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sam Kulendran

    Very interesting post Brandon! I’d love to see the masonry specification. Masonry demising partitions are often ruled out here due to cost and weight. The acoustic louvre for the fresh air is interesting too. I’m not sure how it would fit in with our regulatory guidelines locally but could be an interesting approach on sites next to noisy industry or transportation/transit where we want to ensure fixed windows.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s