Rotterdam Centraal Station

Team CS designed Rotterdam Centraal Station, one of the most important transport hubs in The Netherlands, as a building that tries to create a dialogue between the different urban characters of the north and south side.

Rotterdam Centraal Station
One of the fundamental challenges of Rotterdam Centraal station was the difference in the urban character of the north and south side of the station.
The entrance on the north side has a modest design, appropriate to the character of the neighborhood Provenierswijk and the smaller number of passengers. The entrance gradually connects to the city. In the Provenierswijk the character of the 19th-century Dutch provincial town is strengthened. Large architectural extensions are avoided on this side of the station, the presence of green is ameliorated and the station is transparent.
Rotterdam Centraal Station
Top: Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station. Photo Luke Harley. Above: Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station. Photo Jannes Linders
In contrast, the grand entrance on the city side is clearly the gateway to the high-rise urban center. Here the station derives its new international, metropolitan identity from the hall made ​​of glass and wood. The roof of the hall, fully clad with stainless steel, gives rise to building’s iconic character and points to the heart of the city.
Now Rotterdam Centraal has the appropriate structure and dimensions for the urban landscape; it is in balance with the heights that characterize the metropolis and simultaneously reflects the human scale. The city of Rotterdam is drawn to the new station via the compaction of the small-scale urban texture surrounding the public transport terminal. The entire railway zone becomes one with the city. This finer urban texture with new sightlines and a mixture of living and working will dramatically improve the quality of life and the environment of the station area.
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station. Photo: Jannes Linders
The esplanade in front of the station is a continuous public space. To achieve this simplicity a parking garage for 750 cars and a bicycle shed for 5,200 bicycles are located under the square. The tram station is moved to the east side of the station, so the platforms broaden the square. Bus, tram, taxi and the area for short-term parking are integrated into the existing urban fabric and do not constitute barriers. The red stone of the station floor continues into the forecourt, merging the station with the city. Pedestrian and cycling routes are pleasant and safe and arriving travelers now have dignified entrance to the city, free from traffic.
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station. Photo: Jannes Linders
Incorporation of natural light, the warmth of the sun’s rays and a modern look are important elements in the design. The platform roof on the Proveniersside is transparent. When the train drives into the station, there is an almost tangible feeling of being enshrouded in the station building. Upon entering in the bright high hall through the center side, the traveler gets an overview of the entire complex and a view to the trains that are waiting invitingly along the platforms.
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station
Team CS, Rotterdam Centraal Station. Photo: Jannes Linders
The wood finish on the inside of the hall, combined with the structural wooden beams of the platform roof creates a warm and welcoming ambience, inviting visitors to linger. The largely transparent roof structure which covers all the tracks over a length of 250 meters, flood the platforms with light. The glass plates of the roof vary the level of light transmittance by utilizing different solar cells patterns, which produce an ever-changing and fascinating play of shadows on the platforms.

Rotterdam Centraal Station, Rotterdam, the Netherlands
Program: train station
Architects: Team CS, a cooperation between Benthem Crouwel Architects, MVSA Meyer en van Schooten Architecten and West 8
Lead Architects: Jan Benthem, Marcel Blom, Adriaan Geuze, Jeroen van Schooten
Project Team: Arman Akdogan, Anja Blechen, Freek Boerwinkel, Amir Farokhian, Joost Koningen, Joost van Noort, Falk Schneeman, Daphne Schuit, Matthijs Smit, Andrew Tang, Wouter Thijssen, Joost Vos
Structural Engineer: Arcadis and Gemeentewerken
Mechanical Services: Arcadis and Gemeentewerken
Building Physics: Arcadis and Gemeentewerken
Contractor: Bouwcombinatie TBI Rotterdam Centraal (BTRC), Iemants NV (zuidhal)
Client: Gemeente Rotterdam and ProRail
Area: 46.000 sqm
Completion: 2013

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