Plans for the IJDock on the southern bank of the IJ waterway began back in the 90’s when Bjarne Mastenbroek of SeARCH and Dick van Gameren devised the concept for the masterplan for a mixed-use complex of 89,000 sq m. The location was previously used as a marina, but the plan was to build the new project on the water to create new space in an already dense area. Its proximity to Amsterdam’s central train station would ensure its use and make it a high profile project. Construction began in 2009 and already the project is in use with the parking garages and the new office for the National Water Police open. The rest of the complex will open in the spring of 2013.
The complex’s design began as a volume of maximum size and height and then was excavated to create individual buildings and a unique interior passageway. Sightlines, views of the surrounding neighborhoods, transportation access and the on-water location greatly influenced the projects design evolution. Design of the individual buildings was handed off to Claus en Kaan Architecten for the Palace of Justice, Jan Bakers and Ben Loerakker for the Hotel, and Zeinstra van Gelderen for the Water Police Offices, apartments and market office space. The Palace of Justice is aiming for BREEAM environmental certification. A new marina will provide space for boat slips and improve water-based travel and connectivity.