S.J. VAN EMBDEN, OD 205, 1954-1964, De Wielen/De Zaale, Eindhoven
Technische Universiteit Eindhoven / Technical University Eindhoven ( S.J. van Embden, OD 205 )
© 2006 Jan Derwig
The most characteristic feature of Eindhoven University of Technology is the system of glazed footbridges set some five metres above ground level and stitching together the various faculty buildings. The design is premised on the university's steady growth and the parallel diversifying of education and research. S.J. van Embden planned the overall layout, after which members of his firm OD 205 developed the faculty buildings largely under his supervision. The Swiss architect J.L.C. Choisy was particularly responsible for the architectural appearance of the first buildings on site. Five buildings on campus - the Auditorium, the Main Building, the Mechanical Engineering Faculty, the Computer Centre and the central block of workshops (W-Hal) - exemplify Choisy's combination of expressive concrete and a modular infill of steel and glass. The Auditorium is held aloft by a highly sculptural structure of parallel concrete piers. The Main Building, a colossal glass slab dominating the campus, stands on expressive concrete feet. Every second storey has a permanent floor of reinforced concrete; the double-height space above it can be filled in with mezzanines and galleries as required using lightweight steel partitions and floors. The same applies to the remaining three buildings, examples of modular construction.
The former chemistry building has been converted into new premises for the faculty of architecture by Bert Dirrix. The existing generous floor-to-floor heights and floor areas (30 x 40 metres) necessitated additional facilities for natural lighting. To this end a huge void was sawn out of the floors of the top four storeys and the facades clad with full-height glass panels, even the opaque areas. To keep out direct sunlight, each of these panels has a print applied to the outside (a blown-up photo of the scaffolding surrounding Gaudí's Sagrada Familia) and reflecting cloth on the inside. Other new additions are by Koen van Velsen (Kennispoort) and Rudy Uytenhaak (De Cascade).
Projects: OD 205, J.L.C. Choisy, S.J. van Embden (proj.) (Hoofdgebouw, Den Dolech, 1954-1964), OD 205, J.L.C. Choisy, S.J. van Embden (proj.) (W-Hal, De Wielen, 1964), OD 205, J.L.C. Choisy, W.A.M. Nieuwhof, R.J. Ouendag (proj.) (Werktuigbouwkunde, De Wielen, 1968-1975), Maaskant, Van Dommelen, Kroos, Senf (Studentencentrum, John F. Kennedylaan 3, 1963-1969), OD 205, S.J. van Embden, J.L.C. Choisy (proj.) (Auditorium, Den Dolech, 1963-1965), OD 205, J.L.C. Choisy, T.P. van der Zanden (proj.) (Rekencentrum en Transitorium, De Zaale, 1972), R.H.M. Uytenhaak (De Cascade, De Rondom, 1999), H.H.L.M. Dirrix (Diederen Dirrix Van Wylick) (Vertigo, Den Dolech 2, 1967/1997-2002), K. van Velsen (Kantoorgebouw Kennispoort, John F. Kennedylaan, 2000-2002)