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NEWSFLASH 03_2020
COMPETITION WINNER
‘Cityzen’ - BRUSSELS (International top competition - 62,100 m²)
"Reconversion of the famous Brussels’ Mint Centre into offices, hotel and apartments in cooperation with Snøhetta (OSLO) commissioned by IMMOBEL and WHITEWOOD." 

In September 2019, Immobel, Whitewood and DW Partners launched an international architecture competition together with the Brussels' Maître Architecte (BMA) to redevelop the 62,000 m² building above 'The Mint' shopping centre. The partners of this thorough urban renovation (no new construction) want to transform the building into a mixed residential, office and hotel complex by 2024. The assignment consisted of giving the building an architectural interpretation that matches the central location of the project within the capital. It is also the intention to open up the current closed character of the pedestal allowing it to communicate with its immediate surroundings.
Five international teams of architects (two of them Belgian participants) were selected from more than 50 entries. Out of the various projects, all excellent, the jury chose the design of the Norwegian firm Snøhetta and the Belgian firm Binst Architects. The winning design distinguishes itself through respect for the architectural value of the existing building and its integration into the urban context. For the execution of the project, Snøhetta and Binst Architects will be assisted by the Brussels architectural offices DDS and ADE.
The jury was composed of representatives of the Brussels-Capital Region, the City of Brussels, the Brussels Master Builder, Immobel and Whitewood.

The jury described our concept as follows:

The winning project distinguishes itself by its attention to sustainability and by the openness of the building to its surroundings.
The pedestal is tackled thoroughly on several points creating an interesting connection with the public space, giving the existing massive pedestal a lighter appearance and making it easier to access.

Along the ‘Anspachlaan', the pedestal will be cut out from the first floor to create a new public space close to the pedestrian level. On the ‘Muntplein' side, a large terrace and a restaurant will be created, giving the façade an active role and creating new views of the square.

For the facade, one of the major issues of this assignment, the winning team opted for a new and interesting structure that fulfils multiple functions. The new facade, which will be erected at a distance of 1 m from the old one, acts as a second skin giving the building new proportions. The choice of materials is insightful: the framework is made of wood with a copper cladding, completely dismountable and photovoltaic cells are placed between the posts. This is a sustainable objective, both in terms of production and reusability. The new facade not only gives the building a new look but also generates its own energy, increases the quality of the insulation and develops extra space.
COVID-19
Binst Architects has been fully operational for one week via 'teleworking'.
Binst Architects guarantees maximum continuity in its workflow thanks to the rewarding opportunities of teleworking.
For example, all our project teams and those in charge are now in permanent communication with each other via videoconferencing and stand-by for all necessary consultation moments with clients, engineering firms, contractors and third parties.  
 
Let us seize this inconceivable period to communicate and meet remotely in an even more efficient way in the future.
With the technology on our side, as partners, we can obtain a win-win situation. Feel free to contact us if you would like to coordinate our and your methods even more optimally.
 
We continue to support all our ongoing construction sites in close dialogue with our clients and all the contractors involved, in compliance with strict health and safety regulations.

mail@binstarchitects.be or Luc Binst 03 213 61 61
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FOR MORE INFORMATION: WWW.BINSTARCHITECTS.BE

BINST ARCHITECTS
B 2000 Antwerp - Luikstraat 7
T: +32 3 213 61 61

Our mailing address is:
mail@binstarchitects.be


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