The program demands for two separate buildings to be installed on top of a collective parking garage. The context around the site is intriguingly diverse. On this spot, in fact, a former convent garden, a football stadium and a housing neighborhood collide. One city block, composed of juxtaposed townhouses remains unfinished.

Place: Turnersstraat 36-38, 2020 Antwerpen
Programme: housing/healthcare
Year:  2011 – 2017
Client: GZA vzw
Surface: 17 250 m²
Designer: XDGA (Xaveer De Geyter Architects)
competition: Xaveer De Geyter, Doug Allard, Tom Bonnevalle, Karel Bruyland, Piet Crevits, Paul-Emmanuel Lambert, Willem Van Besien, Peter Vande Maele
definitive design: Xaveer De Geyter, Willem Van Besien, Peter Vande Maele, with Doug Allard, David Ampe, Guillaume Bostoen, Karel Bruyland, Hanne Defloor, Joris De Greef, Arie Gruijters, Matthieu Hackenheimer, Paul Emmanuel Lambert, Cristian Panaité, Yago Ryosuke, Stéphanie Willocx
implementation: Xaveer De Geyter, Willem Van Besien, Peter Vande Maele
Consultants: BEC (structure), Studiebureau Boydens (mechanical), Daidalos-Peutz (acousitics)

GZA Residential Care Centre by Xaveer De Geyter Architects - Sheet3
©Xaveer De Geyter Architects

In order to give new evidence to the situation, two similar forms are inserted. One is a freestanding volume in the park, while the other completes the city block as well as the rectangular garden.

GZA Residential Care Centre by Xaveer De Geyter Architects - Sheet6
©Xaveer De Geyter Architects

The residential care centre comprises of a ground floor level with all the collective functions, including a cafeteria, and four levels of individual rooms with their own common living area. This fluid space on the inside of the bend annihilates the typical corridor that usually ‘institutionalizes’ care centres. The mirrored and glazed facades reflect the park.

GZA Residential Care Centre by Xaveer De Geyter Architects - Sheet
©Xaveer De Geyter Architects

The service flats are more massive, inscribing themselves in the city block. They are  accessed on the side of the courtyard through outside galleries. The apartments have an open plan anchored around a central core containing the bathroom, a kitchen, and storage and can be flexibly divided with semi-transparent sliding walls. Additionally, an indoor terrace that can be closed in winter and used as extra interior space is provided.


XDGA – XAVEER DE GEYTER ARCHITECTS

XDGA is a Brussels/Paris – based office practising architecture, urbanism and landscape design founded in 1988 by Xaveer De Geyter (1957) after his experience as project architect for OMA/Rem Koolhaas.

During the thirty years of its existence, XDGA has managed to build up a significant portfolio and obtain worldwide recognition thanks to its unique approach, diversified expertise and international team (54 collaborators from 11 countries).

XDGA counts to this day five monographs, numerous awards (Mies Van der Rohe Award, Bigmat Award, Flemish Culture Award for Architecture) and three travelling solo exhibitions.

XDGA’s most relevant realised projects include, amongst others: the Subway Station and Public Square Place Rogier in Brussels (2015), the new Headquarters for the Province of Antwerp (2019) and the Multipurpose School Building in Ghent (2020).

Ongoing projects comprise: the extension of the Fine Arts Mueum of Tournai, the development of Three City Blocks and a Mixed-use Building in Brussels.

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