Since 2001, a total of more than 11.000 houses have been realised in various new neighbourhoods in the district of Amersfoort-Vathorst. Each neighbourhood has a unique character. De Laak, for example, is developed as a modern canal house district based on the urban plan of West 8.

The 100 m long and 15 wide plot is located directly along the water. The starting point for the design of 18 affordable houses was to develop both the street and water sides as high-quality front facades. The compulsory storage spaces have been upgraded with white concrete beams that form entrance portals to each single house. Both the house number and the letterboxes are integrated in the design. Green hedges and semi-green pavements support the character of small front gardens. On the other side the houses are directly built into the canal. Large balconies in a light steel construction above the water have been designed here.

By combining 10 m deep 2-storey houses with 9 m deep 2,5-storey houses a diversity in alignment and volume composition has been created. Each single house is clearly articulated by recessed joints between the volumes and by applying various natural colour schemes to the brick and window frames. The repetition of identical French windows and roof edges adds cohesion to the 18 units of this small ensemble.

De Laak / Amersfoort / 2014

Invited competition

Lithos Bouw & Ontwikkeling

West 8

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