SAN/Gerard Strijp S, Eindhoven, Netherlands
Jo Coenen Architects & Urbanists

Philips moves out: forbidden city becomes vibrant, highly urban environment.

The ‘Anton’ and ‘Gerard’ buildings are two white imposing national monuments and part of a series of former Philips factories on Strijp S in Eindhoven. Together with several other buildings, Anton and Gerard form a “ridge” within the built fabric, locally called the “Hoge Rug”, the historic backbone of this neighborhood. This area is being transformed from an enclosed industrial enclave into a lively new neighborhood in the centre of the city. Bureau DiederenDirrix produced the design for ‘Anton’ while Jo Coenen / Coenen-Sättele worked on ‘Gerard’. The official opening took place on Friday 21 June 2013– exactly one year after rebuilding work started. A city has emerged within a building in which people can both live and work in beautiful lofts with four metre high ceilings.

The transformation of the monumental Philips SAN factory into the spectacular residential and working environment ‘Gerard’ called for an enormous effort in all respects. About a 1000 sq m have been devoted to the MU – the centre of contemporary art – and 140 unique lofts have been created. Accessibility was created by adding a new main staircase in the central axis of the building, from which the new units will have access. The approach of the design of Gerard can be referred to as a structural one; it has developed a grammar based on the structure of the main construction. With this grammar and by introducing air and light (to the north: voids over the entire height between 2nd and 6th floor, large glass openings in the roof, and to the south: two storey high patios placed between 2nd and 5th floor), it has made the building suitable to live in and created contemporary offices and commercial spaces, allowing its functional transformation from an industrial building to a flexible, inspiring and contemporary building.

Coenen-Sättele Architecten -

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