Tallest wooden building in the world to be built in Amsterdam



Construction on ‘HAUT’ expected to commence in the second half of 2017

HAUT, a 21-storey wooden residential building by the Dutch River Amstel, is a serious contender to become the tallest timber tower in the world. The municipality of Amsterdam has selected Team V Architecture with Lingotto, Nicole Maarsen, Arup and brand partner NLE to develop this remarkable high-rise structure. With construction work expected
 to start in the second half of 2017, HAUT promises to be a prototype of building in an innovative, sustainable and environmentally-friendly manner.

Standing over 73 meters tall, the residential tower is located in the Amstelkwartier and will include
 55 apartments of different sizes. With a total gross floor area of approximately 14,500m2, the tower will include a public plinth with an urban winter garden (about 1,100m2 gross floor area), cycle storage space and underground car park (about 2,800m2). Building with timber, the design is targeting a BREEAM Outstanding rating, the highest possible sustainability grade.

According to the designers, the use of timber in high-rise buildings is one of the most keenly discussed innovations in the construction industry worldwide. It represents an important step towards the carbon-neutral city: more than three million kilos of CO2 will be stored in the cross laminated timber used to build HAUT. Using wood also provides 
an answer to the Municipality
of Amsterdam’s quest for CO2 neutrality.

The design includes 1,250m2 of PV (solar) panels, which will help the building produce renewable energy, while waste water will be purified through a constructed wetland on the roof. The parking garage in the building has space for electric (shareable) cars. Arup will be providing multi-disciplinary engineering services, including building services engineering, fire, acoustics and building physics consulting.

The municipality of Amsterdam selected this team for their vision of the city of the future in which nature and architecture are balanced. HAUT also stands for ‘haute couture’: tailor-made architecture. The design offers the first buyers extensive freedom of choice in the size of their apartment, the number of floors, the lay-out and the positioning of double height spaces, outdoor loggia’s and balconies.

The façade is characterized by strong, clear lines of light grey
 floor bands and tall windows, with an apparently random pattern of cantilevering balconies. The wooden ceilings underneath the balconies and the pronounced projections at the sharp building corner facing the River Amstel make HAUT’s architecture strikingly distinctive.

The triangular base of the building also includes a spectacular public urban winter garden, HAUT’s Hortus. Residents of the neighborhood can grow their own vegetables, relax and meet each other. The Hortus forms an extension of the adjoining Somerlust Park and includes the Innovation Lab, a demonstration center where the latest innovations in the fields of nutrition, energy and construction are presented. The lab will be arranged by brand partner NLE (Netherlands Energy Company).

HAUT will be constructed using cross laminated timber 
(CLT) prefabricated panels made
of European softwoods from sustainably managed forests. In total, the wood used to construct the building can store over 3 million kg of CO2 and will come from approximately 12 hectares of forests, which would take 10 years on average to grow. Significantly, if HAUT were to be made from concrete, it would cost approximately 650,000 kg extra in CO2 emissions.

For the main structure, CLT will be used for the load bearing wall construction including all walls and floors. Only the basement (with underground parking) will be made from concrete to bear Amsterdam’s high ground water pressure. To create a transfer zone between the concrete basement and the timber high-rise structure, parts of the ground floor and first floor structure will also be made of concrete.

HAUT will be built in Amstelkwartier, a new residential neighbourhood in Amsterdam, situated on the River Amstel between Oud-Zuid (Old South) and Watergraafsmeer. The area will contain some 4,000 residential units, together with shopping facilities and small business premises. Approximately 1,000 dwelling units have already been completed, and the first primary school has been opened. Somerlust, the new park on the Amstel, is also already open to the public.

“The project will be a prototype for timber high-rise,” says Do Janne Vermeulen, Partner and Architect of Team V Architecture. “Wood is not only a warm, natural material, but also very flexible. This allows the apartments to be tailor-made: Haut-Architecture.”

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