World’s largest Floating Office Rotterdam, Rijnhaven harbor, Netherlands Building Photos, Dutch Architecture
Floating Office Rotterdam
2 Sep 2020
World’s largest Floating Office Building
Architecture: Powerhouse Company
Location: Rijnhaven harbor, Rotterdam, the Netherlands
A Floating Foundation for the Future : Floating Office Rotterdam Hits the Water
Photos by Sebastian van Damme, unless noted otherwise
Rotterdam, 2nd of September, 2020 – The world’s largest floating office, Floating Office Rotterdam, has taken a giant step toward its completion. On Monday, 31 August, the huge floating structure, measuring 90 by 24 meters, arrived at its permanent berth in Rotterdam’s Rijnhaven harbor, having been towed there all the way from Zaandam, over 80 kilometers away.
The Floating Office Rotterdam (FOR), designed by architecture office Powerhouse Company and developed by RED Company, is a building for a new era. Completely reusable and recyclable, it’s an example of circular design. Off grid and carbon-neutral, it will float if water levels rise due to climate change.
The floating office will reflect the values of its future inhabitants: the Global Center on Adaptation. This Rotterdam based NGO promotes planning, investment and technology to mitigate climate change. The climate-resilient office is therefore both an illustration of the center’s mission and an inspiration for others. With its own solar energy source and water-based heat-exchange system, it’s completely self-sufficient.
Built entirely of timber, to minimize its carbon footprint, the FOR building has three stories and is accessed via a boardwalk. It will make use of natural energy thanks to 800 square meters of solar panels. It will also use the water from the Rijnhaven for cooling.
Overhanging balconies around each floor plus a pitched roof will provide shade. FOR will also feature public facilities: a restaurant with a large outdoor terrace and a swimming pool, adding new life to the harbor area.
The arriving of the floating foundations completes the first milestone of the project. After its voyage through the Dutch waterways, on entrance to the Rijnhaven harbor from the River Maas, the port authority gave the floating foundations a nautical salute – a fitting welcome for this futuristic, fun and functional example of sustainable architecture. Over the coming months the building will be further constructed and finalised here.
Designing a sustainable, floating office building was a challenging commission, and we approached it holistically.
- Nanne de Ru, founder Powerhouse Company
The building structure is designed in wood and can easily be demounted and re-used. It’s ready for the circular economy.
- Paul Sanders, project architect Powerhouse Company
About Powerhouse Company
Powerhouse Company is an award-winning architecture office based in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Founded in 2005, it has since grown into a multidisciplinary office of around 100 professionals, with international studios in Beijing, Oslo and Munich. Along the way it has won a number of prizes, including the Dutch Design Award, the Maaskant Prize and the AM/NAI Award.
About the Global Center on Adaptation
The GCA is a global knowledge center that supports countries, organizations and companies with knowledge and advice in the field of climate change.
World’s largest floating office, Rotterdam – Building Information
Architect: Powerhouse Company
Developer: RED Company
Financing: ABN Amro
Project management: DVP
Contractor floating foundations: Hercules FC
Structural engineer: Bartels & Vedder
Wood structure engineer: Solid Timber
MEP installations & sustainability: DWA
Wood structure: Derix Gelamineerde Houtconstructies
Building installations: Roodenburg Groep
Glass: iFS Building Systems
Steel: W. Ten Ham Plaatwerk
Photographs: Sebastian van Damme
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Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
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