For the design of the Blaak tower, we were inspired by organic Stibnite formations, which create both structural and spontaneous spatial realities. The accumulation of solid crystals is a great example of different but complementary forms, generated with the same parameters, but responding in very local and specific manners. The tower reacts to the corner site in Rotterdam in a very local and specific way, but its formation is self-referential and inherent to its own logic as a structure.
An important point that is often underestimated in the design of a tower is the public use of the ground floor. We believe that this should be an active, integrated part of the city. We therefore unfold the tower, creating both a larger use for retail and a more open, spontaneous use for pedestrians. These transparent zones continue up in strips along the facade, connecting public sky lobbies back down to the ground floor lobby. This way, a vertical city in a city is created.
The elegant design and iconic triangular façade are light and technologically efficient, while climatic elements are integrated, such as natural ventilation, fritted glass, and passive solar energy. The tower’s sustainability is enhanced by well-insulated facades, green roofs and sky lobbies with multi-story winter gardens forming "green lungs". The slender shape and the articulated geometry above the base of the tower maximizes the penetration of daylight and create a more intimate, villa-like quality on the upper floors, with generous terraces and dramatic views of the surrounding neighborhood. The tapered shape gives minimum shade on the surrounding area and the market hall.