An exceptionally sustainable building integrated into the landscape of the Achterhoek
As a building type, the municipal hall divides into a public, easy-to-read zone for visitors and an enclosed office zone.
This municipal hall lies just outside Hengelo. The landscape of the Achterhoek region is marked by gentle slopes, belts of trees, open-field settlements, brooks and vistas. The farmland here has angular plots, with many inflections in its boundary. The gently raked roof of the municipal hall follows the slopes in the landscape and the two kinked principal masses continue lines set out by the nearby belts of trees. Cars are tucked out of sight. All you see from a distance is the landscape, the hall and the church tower.
Two principal masses containing secure offices are located at either side of a tall atrium of civic facilities. From the council chamber and the grand café there are views across the brook to the open-field and the church. Such an idyllic view can also be seen from the civic hall across the fields with a farm tucked between trees. The landscape has been returned to its former state with drainage ditches, patches of wetland and original vegetation. This is to constantly remind councillors and administrators of their cultural heritage.
The building comes across as monastic, constrained and refined. No one part catches the attention. Everything about it is in equilibrium, giving added emphasis to the large windows looking out onto the surroundings.
The building is innovative in terms of its intentions in Sustainability and ‘Het Nieuwe Werken’, an office concept with shared work spaces, offices are paper-free and every workplace is suitable for every member of staff.
The municipal hall has the highest possible Green Calc label. Windows have automatically operating insulating hatches, reducing direct sunlight but allowing free views into the country side closing at night to insulate the building.