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DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

Netherlands Architecture News - May 13, 2017 - 13:23   16405 views

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

Two Dutch studios NL architects and XVW architectuur's DeFlat Kleiburg housing project in Amsterdam has won the 2017 Mies van der Rohe Award - for the first time this prestigious accolade goes to a project of renovation of an existing building.

The team's renovation project DeFlat sets an innovative approach for the renovation of one of the biggest apartment buildings in The Netherlands called Kleiburg, a bend slab with 500 apartmentsin Amsterdam’s Bijlmermeer neighbourhood. Consortium DeFlat rescued the building from the wrecking ball by turning it into a "Klusflat", meaning that the inhabitants renovate their apartments by themselves.

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

The winning project has been chosen from a list of 355 works from 36 European countries. Five finalists for the award included Rivesaltes Memorial Museum, Katyn Museum in Warsaw, DeFlat Kleiburg in Amsterdam, Kannikegården in Ribe and Ely Court in London, accompanied by the authors of the works, who also gave lectures open to the public.

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

DeFlat Kleiburg inspires reflection on the new and complex reality of contemporary living. It proposes new forms of "affordable housing", adding to what is universally a complex and multi-layered offer (ranging from fully subsidized rent to shared ownership and rent- purchase schemes) by providing options for the large majority who have a little money but cannot afford to get on the conventional property ladder. This is low-cost habitable space (€1,200 per m2) – a fantastic new option that does not currently exist. 

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

NL architects and XVW architecture will receive 60,000€ money prize for this most outstanding European architecture award. 

The international jury valued that the project is a collective effort by many people. The architectural concept was to transform the megablock into a contemporary residential building with flexibility in internal planning, and creating a new edge to the street and the landscape – and yet do as little as possible. They considered it to be "both heroic and ordinary at the same time".

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

"It challenges current solutions to the housing crisis in European cities, where too often the only ambition is to build more homes year-on- year, while the more profound question of what type of housing should be built goes unanswered," the jury chairman said.

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

"Kleiburg helps us imagine a new kind of architectural project, which responds to changing household patterns and lifestyles in the twenty-first century. A revitalisation of typologies of the past is as relevant as experimenting with new, untested models in this quest, just as radically transforming existing buildings is."

The accolade will be presented to the winners on May 26, 2017 at the Awards Ceremony, which will take place at the Mies van der Rohe Pavilion in Barcelona. 

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

DeFlat Kleiburg by NL architects and XVW architecture wins Mies van der Rohe Award 2017

Within the scope of the awards ceremony (between May 20 and 25), the finalist and winning buildings of the current edition will organize activities to open their doors to the public. The EU Mies Award Day on May 26 will also include the opening of two exhibitions:

- "Made in Europe", which will present some of the models collected by the Prize since 1988 in 11 containers. 

- "2017 EU Mies Award exhibition" will include models, texts, sketches and drawings of the works. The exhibition will travel around Europe and internationally in the next 18 months, with its first stop at BOZAR Centre for Fine Arts Brussels in September 2017.

During the same day, "Mies Talks" on 'Collective housing and regeneration' and 'Contemporary architecture and heritage' will allow Winners, Finalists, shortlisted, clients and people interested to debate on the emerging topics highlighted by the Jury.

All images © Marcel van der Burg

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