Graansilo Korthals Althes. Fotomontage. Copyright © Flavio Cesarini

Reuse of the Graansilo Korthals Altes in Amsterdam

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The Graansilo Korthals Altes was built in Amsterdam in the year 1898 in order to supply the city with cereals in case of war. The building is 20 m. wide; 130 m. long; 18-25 m. high. The structure is a grid of brick walls, based on a module of 3.84 per 3.84 m. Every module is forming a silo 14 m. high. The roof is supported by wooden trusses.

My project finds inputs in the following considerations:
For Dutch people, a panoramic view from the top of a building or a mountain is a very attractive experience.
Many artists live in Amsterdam but a museum of contemporary art is missing.
The Graansilo Korthals Altes is actually squatted by an artist community.
The weather in Amsterdam is usually horrible and, as the city doesn’t offer alternative meeting points, people are meeting in tiny cafe’s.
The Silo is a wonderful example of industrial archeology. Outside shouldn’t be modified.
The city center is very busy and alternative locations could use some more visitors.

So I discharged the most of the brick walls from their structural function by inserting metallic trusses and, inspired by Gordon Matta-Clark, I demolished portions of the silos in order to generate room and appealing perspectives.

The result is a multifunctional cultural center where culture tries to loos its elitaire make up. The visitors can chose whether to use the available information or to take a walk through the building and a glimpse of the running clouds from the top.

Renderings of the project can be found here. A 3D animation here.