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 top floor serves as the communal space where a living room, kitchen and gaming area are all connected in one large open space

the top floor serves as the communal space where a living room, kitchen and gaming area are all connected in one large open space

on top of the central element a mezzanine houses a small library and offers a spectacular view over the skyline of Rotterdam

on top of the central element a mezzanine houses a small library and offers a spectacular view over the skyline of Rotterdam

visual connection between the ground and first floor

visual connection between the ground and first floor

the central interior element with the void in the middle connects the various floors, both visually and physically

the central interior element with the void in the middle connects the various floors, both visually and physically

circulation around the void

circulation around the void

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

 
one of the rooms in the Supercube

one of the rooms in the Supercube

the central element is clad with dark brown felt for acoustic purpose

the central element is clad with dark brown felt for acoustic purpose

the element piercing through the existing structure

the element piercing through the existing structure

looking down in the void

looking down in the void

courtyard of the 'kubussen' with the brightly lit ground floor of the exodus cube

courtyard of the 'kubussen' with the brightly lit ground floor of the exodus cube

the world famous 'kubuswoningen complex' designed by architect Piet Blom with the larger supercube on the foreground

the world famous 'kubuswoningen complex' designed by architect Piet Blom with the larger supercube on the foreground

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

site plan showing the cube complex crossing the busy Blaak road connecting the marketsquare on the north with the old harbour on the south

site plan showing the cube complex crossing the busy Blaak road connecting the marketsquare on the north with the old harbour on the south

 

Superkubus nominated for the 'Gouden Piramide 2014'

visit their site for more information

all nominees 'Gouden Piramide 2014' with minister Bussemaker (photo Valerie Kuypers)

all nominees 'Gouden Piramide 2014' with minister Bussemaker (photo Valerie Kuypers)

 

client
Woonbron/stichting Exodus

address
Rotterdam, The Netherlands

completed
2013

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