Patch 22: flexible and durable high-rise in wood

6 juli 2020

The wooden apartment complex Patch 22 in Amsterdam-Noord is an inspiring example of an ecologically, socially and economically sustainable construction project, which is also climate neutral. Pieters Bouwtechniek was the main constructor of this wooden eye-catcher along the water in the Buiksloterham district.

Patch 22 originated from a need to develop in a different, sustainable way. The initiator and client Lemniskade BV, the company of architect Tom Frantzen and construction manager Claus Oussoren, won the Sustainability Tender Buiksloterham with the design. This tender was issued in 2010 by the municipality of Amsterdam and contributed to the municipality's goal to have all new projects built in a climate-neutral manner by 2015. Patch 22 took the lead in the Buiksloterham district.

The special feature of the design by architect Tom Frantzen is that it offers room for future changes. The users are in fact the owner of a part of the building that they have determined themselves, which they have been able to arrange entirely at their own discretion. They have therefore been able to determine the size, layout, destination and desired facilities of their space. The building is therefore able to move with the users and that makes Patch 22 suitable for living, working or a combination of both. In other words: a 540 m2 loft, a 65 m2 studio and everything in between is possible.


Image: Luuk Kramer

Large span
The complete freedom of layout means that all spaces are kept free from structural elements. The self-supporting Slimline floor system, a combination of ceiling, installation space and top floor in one, allows column-free spans of up to sixteen meters. In this case it concerns spans of approximately nine meters. The floors, which consist of fire resistant concrete slabs with integrated steel profiles, have two support points and transfer the load to the underlying main supporting structure. One of the advantages of this floor system is that the recesses in the steel profiles provide space for pipes, cables and underfloor heating. The weight of the Slimline floor system is also lower than that of others.

Energy neutral
One of the conditions of the municipality of Amsterdam was that the building would become completely energy-neutral. This was achieved, among other things, by mainly using sustainable materials. In addition, two large CO2-neutral pellet stoves on the ground floor heat the water, the solar panels on the roof generate enough energy to provide the entire building with energy and the rainwater is collected for reuse.

Warm appearance
Patch 22, which was completed in 2015, is a real eye-catcher on the IJ in Amsterdam-Noord. Not only from the outside, but also from the inside. The facades are covered with Douglas wood slats. Inside, all load-bearing walls, ceilings and frames are in the natural color as much as possible. It is precisely because the wood has remained visible in as many places as possible that, despite the sleek design, the building still has a very warm appearance.


Image: Luuk Kramer

Playful effect
With a height of over thirty meters, Patch 22 in Amsterdam North is one of the tallest wooden buildings in the Netherlands. The six floors, an assembly of wooden walls and columns and an open concrete system floor, each four meters high, rest on a concrete table construction that covers the bottom two floors. In this way, the forces from the wooden stability walls are well distributed over the foundation. In addition to the stability walls in the end walls, the central core in prefabricated concrete also contributes to building stability. The six floors are rotated alternately several degrees from each other, making it appear as if they are stacked randomly. This creates a playful effect.

Fire resistant
The building has a beam-column structure in laminated spruce. Timbering the timber construction is one of the ways to make a wooden building fire resistant. A disadvantage of this, however, is that the wooden appearance is lost. For this reason, the dimensioning of the construction has been chosen: all sides of the wooden columns and beams have been made thicker and the connections are realized within this fire-resistant shell. In the unlikely event of a fire breaking out, part of the wood can burn away without substantially affecting the load-bearing capacity of the construction. The interior spaces are separated by double plaster walls. This not only contributes to fire safety, but also ensures sound insulation.

Image: Luuk Kramer

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