Info: Team CS Photography: Jannes Linders; courtesy Benthem Crouwel Architekten |
The new Central Station of Rotterdam is an interesting yet simple exercise in distinctly metropolitan station architecture.
At Rotterdam Central, the old station by Sybold van Ravesteyn, which consisted of a station hall, pedestrian tunnel and open platforms, each with its own canopy, was out of step with current requirements with respect to size, layout and grandeur. What was needed was a new station, designed as an entity: the station hall now runs from Proveniersplein on the north side to Stationsplein on the south – in other words, the 250-metre-wide platform roof forms a whole with the main concourse and the train travellers’ tunnel. The result is that from the moment of arrival, train passengers have the sense of entering a building.
The station and its surrounds are designed by Team CS - cooperation between Benthem Crouwel Architects, MVSA Meyer en Van Schooten Architecten and West 8, who have maximized the stark difference in character north-to-south of the station to create a discerning environment at each end.
Towards the north, which opens to a residential area, the station manifests as a transparent hall that matches the character of the late nineteenth-century Proveniers district. Major extensions are avoided here and the green landscaping is enhanced. The new station roof makes a modest and transparent impression on this side.
Towards the south, on the city centre side, the station exhibits a new grandeur that is in keeping with the dimensions of the imposing high-rise buildings that characterize the entrance to the city. Here, the building and the new station square merge and the imposing station roof folds to create a welcoming and very spacious station concourse, which also provides direct access to the new metro station below.
With the trams relocated to the east side of the station square, the public space in front of the station now offers arriving travellers a genuine entrance to the city, free of criss-crossing traffic. The enormous scale of the new station is mitigated by the choice of wood as cladding for the gigantic roof.
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Architecture, UK, Rotterdam Station, Design, Infrastructure, Transport.,