After thirty years of being primarily empty, the building has finally found a sustainable permanent function. Since the opening of the world famous ‘Cube House Complex’ in 1982, the ‘Super Cube’ has struggled to find a permanent program: the building was dark, with spaces that were difficult to accommodate. Moreover, the building was exceedingly warm in summer months. P·A came up with a bold plan to bore a hole all the way through the center of the building, creating a void from the roof down to the ground floor. The void brings daylight into the heart of the building, fosters interaction between programs on different stories and enables natural ventilation. The Super Cube now offers comfortable space for offices, 20 independent living units and shared facilities for recreation, cooking, dining and sport. The transformation was nominated for “the Golden Pyramid (de Gouden Piramide)”, a prestigious state prize awarded biennially for excellence in commissioning work in architecture, urban design, landscape architecture, infrastructure and physical planning.

 
 
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lara van der wel

director of Stichting Exodus


"I look back on our cooperation with P·A with fondness. These men are creative and dedicated. During the design process, Sander and Maarten came by regularly to get to know Exodus and our residents and to truly understand the things that are important to us. To me, that really made the difference. I’m impressed by how P·A has transformed this building into an attractive space that stimulates interaction between residents. To this day everyone is fairly impressed when seeing the shared third floor!"

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abel blom

son of Piet Blom (architect and designer of the 'kubussencomplex' in Rotterdam)

"When I heard about the plans for the remodel, I wondered whether it was really necessary to bore a hole from top to bottom through the building, straight through all of the concrete floors… When I met Sander and Maarten and they first presented the design to me I wasn’t particularly pleased with it. But after I got to know them and become familiar with the design, I was convinced. The most problematic building in the Cube House Complex has – in part because of this intervention – finally obtained a meaningful function: it now has a social function that my father would have been proud of."

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tracy metz

journalist and author about urban issues


"For a facility serving former prisoners in a building with a checkered history, the place has a convivial atmosphere, especially on the communal fourth floor. And bedrooms, small though they are, feel like dwellings rather than cells. Exodus is a halfway house, with the emphasis on 'house'. One former convict living there recently even placed a mat in front of his door spelling out in florid letters: home."

published in the 'Architectural Record' - Febuary 2014

the added element is lightened by the roof lights

the added element is lightened by the roof lights

this light is transferred to the other floors via a bold intervention in the existing structure

this light is transferred to the other floors via a bold intervention in the existing structure

the element connects the various floors, both visually and fysically

the element connects the various floors, both visually and fysically

 
the added element runs vertically through the entire Supercube and brings light as far as the ground floor

the added element runs vertically through the entire Supercube and brings light as far as the ground floor

section after intervention - the element connecting the different floors and providing circulation

section after intervention - the element connecting the different floors and providing circulation

visual connection between the ground and first floor

visual connection between the ground and first floor

circulation around the void

circulation around the void

one of the rooms in the Supercube

one of the rooms in the Supercube

the perforating element, enabling circulation around the element

the perforating element, enabling circulation around the element

the world famous 'kubuswoningen complex' designed by architect Piet Blom

the world famous 'kubuswoningen complex' designed by architect Piet Blom

courtyard of the 'kubussen'

courtyard of the 'kubussen'

birds eye view by night

birds eye view by night

the element piercing through the existing structure

the element piercing through the existing structure

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the element piercing through the existing structure at the top floor of the Supercube

the element piercing through the existing structure at the top floor of the Supercube

ground floor plan

ground floor plan

first floor plan, 10 individual rooms with bathroom

first floor plan, 10 individual rooms with bathroom

second floor plan, 11 individual rooms with bathroom

second floor plan, 11 individual rooms with bathroom

third floor plan

third floor plan

fourth floor plan

fourth floor plan

site plan of the world famous cube structure

site plan of the world famous cube structure

 

client
Woonbron/stichting Exodus

address
Rotterdam, The Netherlands

commissioned
2014

contractor
Hijbeko B.V., Capelle aan den Ijssel

collaborations
-

advisors
IMd Raadgevende Ingenieurs, DGMR

publications
coming soon

role P·A
architect and interior architect

project photos
Ossip van Duivenbode and René de Wit