Stramien (designing architect)
ELD Partnership (executive architect)
(1531) 2015 – 2019
It is becoming a tradition: visiting a beautiful project in Antwerp at the annual ‘Open Wervendag’. Last year we visited the Province house and this year the Stock Exchange. A five-star hotel from the Marriot chain will soon settle in the probably oldest fair in the world. Not only in the 16th century building, also in adjacent buildings in the Lange Nieuwstraat.
The Stock Exchange was used until 1997. Events were organized for a few more years. It was abandoned in 2001. It has been vacant for fourteen years, resulting in a lot of damage. At the beginning of 2015, archaeological excavations were carried out to see what stood at this location before 1531. Remains of buildings from the 12th century and urns from the Iron Age were found.
The most spectacular space of the entire project is of course the central hall of the old Stock Exchange. This is also an internal intersection of four streets. In every wind direction there is an entrance / exit to a street. The space will be open to the public during the day, so that people can also walk faster from the Meir to the St. Carolus Borromeus church. It can also be used to organize events such as classical concerts, exhibitions and fashion shows. The terrace of the restaurant will also be here, the restaurant will be located in the old ‘Schippersbeurs’ on the Lange Nieuwstraat.
The central space is very light due to the enormous glass roof with a wrought iron support structure. If you look closely at the structure, you will see that the decoration consists of flowers and plants. A sample card of the goods that were traded here in the hall. No species is shown twice.
The most spectacular item for me in this building are the columns. Not only because they are beautifully decorated, but especially because they can move up and down at the moment! The structure under all columns has been removed and the columns are placed on steel beams. Each column can be adjusted so that no cracks or other damage can occur with the renovation. Above you see a photo from the underground parking with a view to the central hall with the column that seems to float above you.
Hotel du Bois
The oldest part on the Lange Nieuwstraat is Hotel du Bois. A 16th century building for which Jan Pieter Van Baurscheit designed a rococo façade in 1750. In the nineteenth century, enlargement took place in the same style as this facade. In this part, the rooms of the hotel will come to a total of 139. The ground floor of Hotel du Bois will be reconstructed from historical drawings to bring back the old days.
Both under the Stock Exchange and the hotel will be an underground parking for 293 cars and 125 bicycles. Entry and exit will be at Sint-Katelijnevest 55 with Q-Park as the manager. There are three underground floors in total. Temporary columns have been placed, which are now being removed because the definitive columns are now all there. These very brutal columns have a photogenic view, I think.
Stramien, ELD Partnership, Origin
(1531) 2015 – 2019
This article first appeared on my other site about architecture in and around Antwerp: archiplore.
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