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GPA and Office Winhov to renovate and extend Station Amsterdam Amstel


In collaboration with the Dutch firm of architects Office Winhov, Gottlieb Paludan Architects has won the competition to overhaul and expand Station Amsterdam Amstel in the Dutch capital. The project includes both renovation of an existing, preservation-worthy station building and construction of a new station building as well as 3,800 new bicycle parking spaces.

Amsterdam Amstel is the fourth largest station in Amsterdam, by passenger numbers, and is situated in the south-eastern part of the city, an area in rapid growth. For example, the infrastructure around the station is about to undergo comprehensive restructuring, which was one of the main reasons for launching the competition.

Public transport and cycling solutions
The winning proposal produced by Gottlieb Paludan Architects (GPA) and Office Winhov (OW) is made up of a number of subprojects and will bring new and old together into one architectural vision. The project, which will be implemented over the next five to ten years, comprises an existing, preservation-worthy station building from 1939 in the east and a new station building in the west which must come together as a cohesive whole and integrate with the surrounding urban space. In addition, the project will ensure new and enhanced connections with the area’s light rail and bus lines, roads and bicycle paths as well as new, extensive bicycle parking facilities, both above and below ground. The design of the new station building in the west will integrate with its surroundings by opening up towards the Amstel River and the new urban development area.  

New and old come together
The work with the existing station building will include both a sensitive restoration of the original architecture and a restrained adaptation to new needs and increased passenger numbers, including commercial leases, the establishment of new stairs and platform furniture together with expansion of the underground bicycle parking facilities.

Since it was built in 1939, the existing station building has undergone comprehensive changes in order to make space for shops and food stalls. GPA and OW’s winning proposal focuses on respect for the original design and re-establishing the architecture. The panel of judges makes a similar point, noting that the project contains good and strong history, taking the form of a declaration of love to the modernist idiom of the existing building.

The building will be partially brought back to its original design and expression, though adapted to the demands and requirements of a twenty-first-century station. The new building will provide space for extra commercial leases and a striking new entrance for cyclists and pedestrians on the west side.

The existing station building is built on a raised foundation, with a basement underneath. The new station building will have a similar construction and both basements will be turned into bicycle parking facilities, providing enough space for 3,800 bicycles.

Passenger flow as design parameter
An original underground passage, providing access from the station to the western side of the railway tracks will be extended and converted to become part of the new station building. Thus, the projected passenger flows provide the basic structure of the design and the transfer from bicycle to train which includes the walk through the station buildings and on to the platforms becomes a convenient integrated route.