MVRDV, 2004-2014, Ds. Jan Scharpstraat 298/Westnieuwland, Rotterdam
Jacob van Rijs
Nathalie de Vries
In 2014, Rotterdam suddenly started to feature in various international lists of ‘places to visit’. This city marketing coup was due in part to the completion of this spectacular combination of covered market and housing. The horseshoe shaped building mass contains 200 apartments, each with a window overlooking the market. On the ground floor of the horseshoe are shops and restaurants. The arch covers a public space of 120 x 70 metres and a height of 40 metres. Permanent ‘market stalls’, whose roofs are also accessible, are set out on a square grid. Both end facades are entirely of glass, supported by a network of steel tension cables. The remaining elevations and the floor of the hall are clad in grey stone. Below ground are a large supermarket and 1200 parking spaces. The entire inner face of the Markthal is covered with Horn of Plenty, an 11,000 m² artwork by Arno Coenen and Iris Roskam, which depicts the products on sale below in a greatly magnified form.