From the city centre, Amsterdam University College (AUC) marks the entrance to Amsterdam Science Park, the international science centre located in the Watergraafsmeer district.
The faculty houses the three-year bachelor programme in Liberal Arts and Sciences of the two Amsterdam universities, UvA and VU, and accommodates 900 students. Mecanoo designed the AUC building as a home for the international community of students and teachers.
The transparent entrance and striated Cor-Ten steel facade lend the square building a distinctive but friendly appearance. Diagonal roofs running north-south create a vast attic with a striking, folded timber-clad ceiling. Underneath these folds are quiet, hidden study areas and the library.
Voids through the centre of the building provide legibility and vistas. Students meet one another on the grand staircase that links the voids and features integrated seating.
Spaces such as the restaurant on the ground floor, the common room and the study room have double-height glazing for generous views over the Science Park. The interior finishes such as the grey poured floor and concrete walls in combination with the timber ceiling with skylights create a rich space with a warm atmosphere and beautiful sense of light.
The compact building volume and sedum green roof contribute to the sustainability of the AUC building, which has a Greencalc+ rating of 200.