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EnBloc encourages a sense of belonging by engaging five communities to co-create an urban block

EnBloc in Amsterdam’s Houthaven is nearing completion. An ensemble of 5 elegant buildings, each with their own character, were created in consultation with the future residents. The basic 166 units was transformed into 65 homes spread over 5 buildings. The result is a variety of personalised unit layouts: homes from 1 unit in size (30 m2) to homes of 5 units in size (280 m2). The process encouraged a sense of belonging, where as a collective the residents determined a joint budget for the shared spaces and the co-designed facade.

Each facade is tailor-made with a different masonry theme, roof mouldings and individual entrance. The cohesive ensemble links contemporary living with local building traditions and cultural context.

In search of beauty: linking contemporary living and building with local building traditions and cultural context. Approach:  Composing playful window patterns following typical iconographic patterns found in Nassaukade and the typical Amsterdam canal house. Using instruments of color contrast, proportion, rhythm, repetition, themes & variation in search for what architect van Gool describes as a “a symphony of windows.”

The project is a collaboration between MKA, Era Contour and BPD.

Photography by Luuk Kramer.