In the Blaauwlakenblok apartment building at the corner of the Warmoesstraat and the Sint Annenstraat in Amsterdam, five different historical themes were used so that the architecture would fit into the old city centre.
On the alley side, the narrowness of the Sint Annenstraat is emphasized by making the façade project slightly forward as it goes up, a theme typical of medieval timber construction in Amsterdam. The alley wall consists of three sections. The first section is made of dark brick and has windows of an abstract design, which hang like drops from the protruding stories. These windows are not aligned one above the other: as they go up, each row features more and smaller windows. This has a height-increasing effect and accentuates the horizontal stratification of this section of the façade. Next to this is a glass stairwell, which features the same outward projection and works as a mirror in the dark alley. The last section has a façade that is almost literally copied from a medieval house, so that the building connects with the existing historical buildings at this point.
The white block plaster façade on the Warmoesstraat refers to the building that used to stand here. If one looks carefully one sees that this façade gets progressively wider. Here too the windows and French balconies are not aligned above one another but instead shifted in relation to each other, so that the building fits in better with the ‘disrupted order; of the medieval city. Part of the charm of the old city is that everything is a little slanted and uneven.
[A] Sjoerd Soeters
[P] 6 apartments & offices
[G] 730 m2
[C] Woonstichting De Key