Silt Middelkerke makes the longlist for ARC24 Award twice

Venue building Silt Middelkerke was completed just over two months ago, and it already appears twice on the longlists for the ARC24 Award! The event building on the Belgian coast has secured spots on both the ARC24 Architecture Award and the ARC24 Urban Design Award longlists. The design team Nautilus, consisting of architectural studio ZJA, DELVA landscape architects, OZ, and Bureau Bouwtechniek, created the unique design commissioned by developer Debuild and the Municipality of Middelkerke.

Leo ten Wolde, project architect ZJA: "Our team is extremely proud that the Silt Middelkerke event building has made it to the longlist of the ARC24 Award twice, for both the ARC24 Architecture Award and the ARC24 Urban Design Award. It is a special structure that combines coastal reinforcement, livability, and sustainability. Designed with great love for the sea and dunes by a multidisciplinary design team, and delivered within two years by a passionate client and enthusiastic construction team."

ARC24 Award

The ARC24 Award is an initiative by De Architect and is awarded to a recently completed project that is architecturally innovative, has a small footprint, or makes a positive energy contribution. The aim of the award is to promote the economical use of materials and energy sources as an integral part of good architectural design. 

A design that also fits into the existing built environment. Additionally, in 2024, the jury will specifically look at the cultural value of the submitted projects. In June, the jury will nominate three projects from the longlist, and the Awards will be presented on September 26 at the ARC Podium in Rotterdam.

Silt Middelkerke: Venue building and pleasant public space

Venue building Silt Middelkerke is the new landmark on the Belgian coast. A unique project with multiple goals: a new event building, dike reinforcement, a car-free promenade, and an improved public space. With these principles, the multidisciplinary design team created a unique design where building and landscape merge.

Sustainable eye-catcher on the Flemish Coast

Inspired by the former island of Testerep, Silt contemporarily restores a piece of the disappeared historical coastal landscape to Middelkerke. At the heart of the new, experiential landscape stands the hotel tower. Both understated and striking, with a mysterious, sculptural silhouette, it is visible along the entire coastline. 

Enveloped in a wooden veil that will beautifully weather over time, this eye-catcher exudes a connection to the surroundings and sustainability. Just as much as safety, functionality, aesthetics, and economic value, sustainability is central to the design.

Catalyst with a view

Modest yet impactful, Silt serves as the catalyst for a new vibrant heart of Middelkerke. The 'centrifuge' of the building is the central hall, which unlocks all functions. All traffic flows circulate around the concrete core in a dynamic space where the columns and interior facades also tilt backward.

Sophisticated daylight access

The different functions under the dune landscape have varying daylight needs. The restaurant is the brightest space, with two long glass facades and a large skylight. In the event space, the daylight is more filtered, with curtains available to block the light, and the casino is almost entirely hidden under the landscape. A long glass facade opens it up to the beach and the sea beyond. The hotel rooms have large sliding doors to the balconies, offering stunning sea views and sufficient privacy behind the wooden latticework.

Resistant to extreme storm weather

Silt received a new sea defense, capable of withstanding extreme storm weather with exceptionally high waves and water levels of more than two meters above the current high tide level. This makes Middelkerke the best-protected place along the Belgian coast. The building opened in March 2024 and was designed and realized by Bouwteam Nautilus, commissioned by the Municipality of Middelkerke.


Bouwteam Nautilus is a Dutch-Belgian collaboration between lead designers ZJA (architect) and DELVA (landscape architect), in cooperation with OZ (casino and hotel design) and Bureau Bouwtechniek (executive architect); Debuild (developer); TM Furnibo-Democo (contractors); and advisors COBE, VK Engineering, Beersnielsen, Witteveen+Bos, Plantec, MINT, and Sertius.



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