The Amsterdam University College began in 2009 as a selective and residential honors college dedicated to international liberal arts and sciences programs that cross the boundaries between languages, cultures and academic disciplines. Mecanoo Architecten was chosen to design the 5,800 m2 building, which includes classrooms, a library, a restaurant, a common room (living room), project rooms, conference rooms and workstations. Located next to Anna Hoeve, a historic farmhouse, which is surrounded by mature trees, the AUC building serves as a distinctive gateway to the Science Park. Inside multiple common areas encourage interaction and meetings, while the attic area creates a quiet space for the library and study areas.
Designed with a small footprint, the compact building mass creates an optimal ratio between the wall and floor surface and the relationship between open and closed surfaces in the facade is optimized. Thermal storage and concrete thermal massing help reduce energy usage along with the use of geothermal heating and cooling. Daylighting enters the building from the roof via three elongated voids, while sensors and daylight monitors reduce artificial lighting when not needed. The zigzag roof is more than just a striking sculptural addition. The sloping roof facets are covered in sedum, which provide increased insulation and soak up rainwater. So far, the project has a Greencalc+ score of 200.
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