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New European Bauhaus
News article25 June 20211 min read

A public building designed to respect the planet and the staff working in it

We are interested in buildings that become experiences and provide value beyond their housing function.


There's no such thing as waste!

That is the basic principle behind the Cradle-to-Cradle (C2C) philosophy.

Manuel Höhn shared through our website the example of Venlo's City Hall that embodies the principles of C2C - a method that minimises environmental impact by employing sustainable production, operation & disposal practices. Products can be 100% recyclable & waste can serve as raw material.

For the City Hall, wellbeing was the starting point: they wanted to create a comfortable & healthy working environment for staff to make people happier & boost productivity.

The design brings as much daylight & greenery into the interior as possible, creates routes through the building that stimulate people to move around, and is based on healthy materials. At the tower's heart, there is an organic restaurant & a spiral staircase system in the atrium, which encourages physical activity.

The goal of increasing wellbeing was combined with showing absolute respect for the planet.

Sustainable elements:

  • The façade works as a green lung & purifies the air from the road and nearby railway.
  • The car park pre-heats the air in the winter & cools it in the summer.
  • The greenhouse on top of the building purifies the air & delivers heat for the entire building.
  • Rainwater is captured & used, then purified by a plant filter before it flows into the Maas river again.
  • Daylight is deflected & guided as deep as possible into the building to reduce the need for artificial light.
  • The fittings are independent of the construction, which results in high durability & a long life cycle.
  • The materials used get a new life at the end of their use.
  • The void spaces have been designed & dimensioned to create an airflow that is as natural as possible, reducing mechanical ventilation.

Venlo didn't just go for a new building but a City Hall that would signify its excellent service to residents & businesses. A symbol that would proudly refer to the agro-logistics tradition of the city & exude what the municipal organisation wants to be: open, transparent & accessible.

? © Venlo City Hall


Publication date
25 June 2021