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Amsterdam Architecture Prize 2023 - the Golden MONKEY

Het Parool, Jaap Huisman, march 18 2023:

"Narcissistic buildings are out, usability is back in architecture. What is also striking about the ten nominations for the Amsterdam Architecture Prize (the golden AAP): sustainability is now commonplace. [...] Sustainability and circularity, still a big issue in previous editions, have not been abolished, but have become a logical part of the building process." 

De Jakoba is nominated!

Project De Jakoba has been nominated for the Amsterdam Architecture Prize 2023 - the Golden AAP! The prize is awarded annually by Arcam to the city's most outstanding building. The jury and public award winners will be announced on 10 May 2023. Read more about De Jakoba and the other nominations in Het Parool's piece.

Byldis and De Jakoba

In late 2020, we started production on a new build project, namely the beautiful pistachio light green Overhoeks building "De Jakoba" in Amsterdam on the former Shell site. Overhoeks is a new neighbourhood in the Amsterdam North district. In this district, 600 social housing units were built by housing corporation Ymere. The De Jakoba project consists of seven floors with 135 social housing units intended for single-person households including starters and people moving on. The design is by Studioninedots.

As part of the area development in the Overhoeks district, the De Jakoba project shows that quantitative and qualitative construction need not be mutually exclusive. Prefabricated facade elements ensured cost-efficient construction of the social housing units. The use of these materials and the special floor plans of the houses give the project a unique appearance.

Creative interpretation
Within the general urban development plan for Overhoeks, it was specified that the volumes had to be minimised from street level. It was therefore decided to bend the entire volume of De Jakoba inwards. As a result, the building staggers over its full height and length and gradually curves upwards. This creates four different facades with undulating balconies and rounded corners. The unusual design of De Jakoba gives each of the 135 studios a unique floor plan. The communal garden on the ground floor is incorporated into the building as a whole due to the curvature of the building, creating a sense of shelter. The multi-purpose commercial spaces in the building's plinth add to the liveliness on the street.

Green facades and golden sheen
The facade of De Jakoba has striking use of materials. Studioninedots opted for prefabricated exposed concrete, allowing the project to be realised in a year. The concrete of the facades is also polished and rounded, giving the building as a whole a soft but graceful look. The light green colour of the exposed concrete and the silver-gold powder coating used to finish the window frames and balustrades reinforce this overall look and give the building a warm glow. Together with the shape of the building, these elements create changing light and shadow effects on the building during the day. We produced pistachio green exposed concrete for this project, which we did polish and blast (see photos of the production process).

Contribution Byldis:

  • Engineering
  • Precast fair-faced concrete
  • Approximately 365 precast elements


We made the following video in collaboration with our partner Dura Vermeer: 

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"By using the precast façade elements, we realise a significant construction time reduction here [...] so we can welcome our new tenants into their new homes six months earlier."
Bert Stam, Projectmanager Ymere

Photos production process at Byldis in Veldhoven: Danny Fiers
Photos at the construction site in Amsterdam: Ymere
Final result photos: Peter Tijhuis