The Diamond Exchange, Capital C Amsterdam, in Amsterdam has been nominated for the Dutch Steel Award 2020. The monument has undergone a major renovation with a design by architects ZJA in collaboration with Heyligers design + projects. At the apex of the existing monument, a unique dome of steel and glass was placed and named as the ‘High Light’. The faceted diamond like form of the dome is reminiscent of the monument’s history.
Spatial dome made of steel and glass
Based on old photos and archive drawings, Braaksma & Roos Architectenbureau designed the restoration of the original facade. Two striking towers on the roof, the original roof edge and the timpanes from the original design by Van Arkel have been reinstated. Behind it rises the ‘High Light’ of glass and steel. The dome is constructed independent of the original façade and recedes behind it thereby gaining its own identity relative to the existing façade and dome towers. Where the two reconstructed towers reach the roof, the steel ribs of the dome are omitted to create space for a roof terrace. What appears is a theatrical gesture of the dome embracing the towers.
State of the art architecture
The High Light is an example of state-of-the-art architecture: the dome is a grid shell, which means that the structural strength is provided by the double curvature of the elements. A principle that allows for large spans without columns. Parametric design methodologies were employed to create a light and transparent structure, with no two components being the same. This allowed the final shape to be generated step by step in a seamless and controlled manner. Octatube has been responsible for the engineering and implementation of the High Light and Pieters Bouwtechniek for the structural design.
Meaningful part of Amsterdam
The dome is self-aware and iconic, but owing to its lightness it nevertheless serves the historic monument. The stylish dome, which makes the future tangible with its form, function and innovative structural design, also offers one of the most spectacular views of the city of Amsterdam.
On October 13th the winners of the Dutch Steel Award 2020 will be announced during ‘Steel Construction Day’.
Photos: JW Kaldenbach, Capital C Amsterdam