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Bijlmer 80 dwellings

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Maccreanor Lavington Architects

The Bijlmer estate dates from 1965 and represents the first time that ciam principles were applied on a large scale: 40,000 dwellings were realised, 90 per cent of which were high rise. The planning concept is predicated on an orthogonal system of raised roads within honeycomb-shaped, ten-storey blocks sitting on a green level surface. All cars are out of sight, restricted to multi-storey car parks under the road decks. By the 1980s almost 25 per cent of dwellings were unoccupied and the Bijlmer had a notorious reputation as an area of high unemployment, poverty and crime. The present regeneration plans date from the early 1990s when it was decided to demolish up to 60 per cent of the high-rise blocks and replace them with low and medium-rise housing.

The project is both a collection of individual terrace houses and a single clearly-defined form taking on the previous footprint. Monotone brick facades contribute to a sense of substance and wholeness, while vertical rather than horizontal rhythms within the facades express the individuality of each house. The project explores the transition between building and the public realm. For reasons of security there is a strict separation between the public and private realms with little or no semi-private space.

Client: Delta roA

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