Provinciehuis Noord-Brabant

The Provinciehuis of North-Brabant is located South-East of the city of
‘s-Hertogenbosch, capital of the province of North Brabant, and is
surrounded by the water landscape of the Zuiderplas and the motor
landscape of E25.

The building, originally designed in the Seventies by Dutch architect
Hugh Maaskant, was initially unpopular because too expensive and too
big. Now after forty years, Provinciehuis has become a symbol of
active public service and its eighteen storey tower a striking
landmark of the Brabantse landscape. The building shows a perfect
balance between the horizontality of the public and representative
plinth and the elevation of the office tower. Both volumes are raised
of one floor above the ground level to house the parking area, symbol
itself of the modern industrial nature of the concrete architecture.

The strong character of Maaskant’s architecture speaks through the
perfect balance of grand gestures and small details to promote the
interaction between civil servants and administrators. This
interaction was gradually lost. The challenge of the renovation
project was in the correct reading of the original spatial quality of
the plan, in freeing the plinth from the security barriers and in
updating the building to the contemporary needs.

KAAN Architecten works in accordance with Maaskant’s interpretation, yet
with a personal approach. The central hall is now permanently
accessible; the State Hall and the Bois Le Duc Hall are also
accessible when in session. The main entrance area opens now up to
all three levels of the horizontal plinth and houses a curved
staircase to the parking floor, a café and the imposing stairway to
the first floor auditorium. Offices are located in the longitudinal
walls behind the original bricks and lights.

In the office tower the rooms are replaced by a flexible working space
and the floors are clustered in three by three. Every cluster is
provided with open and closed working space: 80 workplaces for 100
employees to highlight the dynamics of the new work environment.
Vertical circulation is streamlined, lifts stop every three floors
and two flights of stairs serve each independent cluster.  

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