When the Dutch town of Apeldoorn decided to concentrate all of its municipal services under one roof, they specified that the new building should utilise as few materials as possible in its construction. Steel and glass were selected as the main construction materials to fulfil the client’s additional brief that the building should also be sustainable and durable in the long term.
With its distinctive shape and the slight cantilever of the upper two floors at both ends, Post Zuid now houses municipal services that were previously scattered across 40 sites in Apeldoorn. With almost 12,000 m2 of space, the new building accommodates municipal services such as the fire brigade, ambulance service, lost and found office and recycling centre.
Designed by COURAGE-MIES, a collaboration of Courage Architecten and Mies Architectuur, Post Zuid features a steel structure and a facade consisting mainly of steel and glass. The sandwich panels used for the metallic parts of the cladding are made of Granite® HDX pre-coated steel (S280GD+Z225) in Jet black (colour G9005). Instead of Granite® HDX’s standard gloss of 30 gloss units (GU), a gloss of only 10 GU was requested by the architects. A total of 20 tonnes of Granite® HDX was supplied for the Post Zuid project by ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products via SDW Profiel.
Designing a common building for so many services presented a challenge for the architects and for the building’s new occupants as it brought together different working cultures for the first time. In order to encourage social contact and collaboration between different departments, the architects created common meeting rooms, workshops and a cafeteria.
Apeldoorn municipality decided to site the new building in a disused industrial area of the town in order to stimulate regeneration. A former cold storage warehouse stood on the site. Rather than demolish it completely, the municipality instructed the architects to integrate much of the existing steel structure into the new building. Demolition and construction waste were re-used in the new building or donated to charities.The old roof panels are now being utilised in Ghana.
To ensure the client’s ambitious sustainability requirements after construction, Post Zuid is heated and cooled using a geothermal system. The huge cantilevered steel structure shades one side of the building while a black steel curtain on the other side protects the upper two floors from sunlight. The main part of the upper volume is glazed to guarantee optimum natural light. Rainwater is collected in ponds and re-used by the fire brigade.
The result is a building which, thanks to Granite® HDX, looks clean and sophisticated on the outside while fulfilling all of the client’s requirements inside.
Granite® HDX was developed for roofing, cladding and architectural application in harsh climatic or environmental conditions. The 55 μm pre-painted coating is available in an attractive colour range with grained surface aspects, and comes with an automatic guarantee against corrosion and any peeling of the coating for up to 30 years.