Amsterdam’s smart and beautiful urban architecture has just been expanded with a playful new addition. MVRDV recently completed The Couch, a vermillion clubhouse for east Amsterdam’s IJburg tennis club that cleverly doubles as sculptural spectator seating. Inspired by the waters of the adjacent IJMeer Lake, the wavy multifunctional structure minimizes the building footprint and boasts high energy-efficient technologies and eco-friendly materials.
Located on a manmade island in the East of Amsterdam, the 322-square-meter Couch clubhouse opens up to views of the IJMeer on the north side and center tennis court on the south through long strips of glazing. In addition to the grandstand rooftop, the open volume comprises dressing rooms, a kitchen, storage, and toilets. The roof of the club folds up at the north, like the crest of a wave, to a height of seven meters for better views of both the courts and IJMeer Lake. The terraced seating comfortably accommodates 200 spectators.
The couch-shaped clubhouse is made from in-situ concrete fully sealed on the exterior with an EDSM polymer hotspray in the same vermillion color and texture as the clay tennis courts. To reduce solar heat gain, the roof dips down on the south side to reduce the size of the glass surface. The unobstructed glazed surface on the north end still allows ample natural light and cooling breezes to penetrate the building and minimizes the need for artificial lighting. The interior is clad in FSC-certified wood, which together with the concrete, helps make the building’s thermal mass highly energy-efficient. A district heating system with a heat exchanger keeps the clubhouse warm in wintertime. Natural ventilation is used for cooling in the summertime.
Images via MVRDV