Amsterdam orphanage modular system [Aldo van Eyck] 1955- ny. Van Eyck avoids creating a central point

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  • public courtyard living spaces

    WORKSPACE `HOUSING SYSTEMS` Learning Activity: Introducing Housing System. Task 4: Identifying Housing Systems Nathalie Ventura, School of Architecture La Salle

    modular systemAmsterdam orphanage [Aldo van Eyck]

    project system


    “All systems should be familiarized one with the other in such a way that their combined impact and interaction can be appreciated as a single complex system - polyphonal, multirhythmic, kaleidoscopic and yet per- petually and everywhere comprehensible.”

    “A house must be like a small city if it’s to be a real house, a city like a large house if it’s to be a real city” - Aldo van Eyck

    the elements

    2 systems:

    the goal of the systemmodules

    open spaces



    The creation of the modules results the in-between spaces which create the circulation. Open spaces are a subsystem of the circulation system.

    the relationship between elements

    + = Home. The orphanage is organized in accordance to those who live there, the orphans. It was meant as a home for them. Van Eyck meant for home to act almost like its own city, with distinct, different areas connected by streets.

    Community. The corridors represents a community feeling. Circulation and interaction is encouraged between different dormitories of different age groups, inviting children to mix and enjoy each others compa- ny. Van Eyck avoids creating a central point within the Orphanage by allowing for such fluid connections between all spaces.

    Organic growth. This decentralized growth model was thought by Aldo van Eyck as a growth model for the city. The internal street aims to be a urban scale element inside the building.

    Independence. Focuses on giving an individual identi- ty to orphan children.

    The system allows some activities, such as adding more modules of residence. However, the space is limited by two streets.

    To replace the project some- where else must be aware that the open spaces must receive sun light.

    environment of the system


    modules [smaller scale] - roof

    Orientation. The open spaces are projected to receive sun light from south.

    The limits of the site. There are two streets bounding the building.

    Van Eyck tried to articulate the tran- sition between different spaces by defining views or moments that allow for individuals to see the desti- nation ahead of them as well as the place from which they came, while at the same time not making any one location seem more important that the other.

    system events