Schelde-Eiland Housing Oudenaarde
newly built appartments
The Scheldt Island housing project, along with the redevelopment of the riverside quays, is part of an urban renewal project in the city centre of Oudenaarde. The project has a unique location on a peninsula; surrounded by water on three sides and featuring panoramic views of the Scheldt river branches, the green landscape of the Flemish Ardennes and the city centre on the horizon. Scheldt Island includes three housing blocks, one of which was designed by POLO Architects: the building at the tip of the peninsula.
The project is particularly attentive and sensitive to the urban development context. After a careful analysis of the location, POLO Architects created a design that harmoniously blends into its surroundings. The search for a suitable volumetry, the articulated detail, the gradation in passability and the delicate choice of material were all key focus points in the design process.
"The design meets the expectations of this type of unusually visible location. The concept is based on a volumetric ensemble, in which a wide range of residential typologies can be housed. Despite the variety of interpretations, the buildings form an architectural and infrastructural unity." – Ramon Alvarez Roa, project architect POLO Architects
SCHELDT RIVERSIDE AND RESIDENTIAL AREA
Two entities - the Scheldt Riverside and the Residential Area - define the architectural image by enclosing a central courtyard. The Scheldt Riverside area is conceived as a sequence of different buildings, each with their own identities. This implies a vertical articulation. The buildings of the Residential Area, however, form a monolithic unity with a subtle facade articulation.
The ground floor level of the inner section is raised compared to the street side. This gives the site a semi-public character. Perforations in the volumes establish a connection between the inner section and the public space, increasing the project’s passability. One subterranean building layer provides sufficient parking space.
Monotony and repetition are avoided by a combination of different apartment orientations (Residential Area or Scheldt Riverside) and variations in the outdoor spaces (walled or open terrace, rooftop terrace, gardens). This results in a fascinating harmonised community in which a wide variety of target groups can live together at a unique location in the city.
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