As part of the Cultura Nova festivities on August 25th, the newly renovated Heerlen City Hall and the new Municipal Offices will join the opening spectacle.
During the Second World War, Architect Frits Peutz designed the Heerlen City Hall, which was finalized as a symbol of liberation and post-war reconstruction. The building was officially unveiled in 1948 by the then Crown Princess Juliana. Seventy-five years later, it was restored and joined by the new Municipal Offices designed by Mecanoo.
The design of the City Hall is part of a well-balanced composition with the elegant new Municipal Offices. The buildings radiate a classic, timeless calm within the attractive, green hilly landscape of South Limburg. By making smart use of the topography, a number of functions of the compact Municipal Offices can be placed below ground level. Here we find the transparent entrance - on the Geleenstraat - which connects the Municipal Offices and the City Hall.
The façade’s rhythm reflects the classic proportions of the Peutz City Hall. The subtle use of materials, the volume and the modest façade rhythm make the new building respect the context of the City Hall. The white-painted bricks and the natural stone cores are an inversion of the materials used by Peutz. The inside has become outside and the outside becomes inside.
On Sunday, August 27th, Francine Houben will deliver a lecture about the design and its role in Heerlen's ongoing transformation. Preceding the inauguration, Houben expresses, "Heerlen boasts the fitting icon in Peutz's City Hall. The link to the new Municipal Offices reflects the city's promising shift toward renewed vitality. I'm honoured to contribute to this journey." In her talk, Francine Houben will delve into the design process and the fusion of past and present. This will be followed by a discussion on tradition, modernity, and future prospects.
More information on the weekend festivities (Dutch), here.