As part of a larger redevelopment of the port at Minervahaven in Amsterdam, MVRDV designed this rainbow-colored Alphabet Building to serve as office space for creative companies. Firms looking for flexible and spacious offices to incubate their creative spirit can select office space behind a letter or even take a group of letters. To be built right on the edge of the harbor, the Alphabet Building enjoys views of the water and will be at the center of a new creative hub for the Dutch city. High efficiency standards and a simple palette of materials will characterize the office building when it is completed in 2012.
The 3,200 sq meter cubic building sits on a transparent plinth with four stories of office space placed on top. Round windows on the east facade form the building’s street address, while the windows on the north facade are shaped like letters of the alphabet. Twenty-four windows total mark the facade, unfortunately not leaving enough space for the I or the Q, which are somehow included in the interior of the building to complete the alphabet. Creative companies can lease office space in blocks of 128 sq meters, taking only 1 letter or a series of letters. For instance, design studio Thonik will occupy the top floor from the letters A to F.
A material palette of exposed concrete, aluminum and steel keep the space simple and easy to decorate according to the firm’s vision. The office spaces are large loft like areas with rough finishing. Employees can enjoy on-site parking as well as a large outdoor space at the back of the building. MVRDV is designing a number of sustainable technologies into the project to ensure the building has an excellent energy profile, although no details have yet been released. The Alphabet Building is part of a much larger refurbishment of the Minerahaven area slated to be a new creative hub for the city and the new office building is expected to be complete in 2012.