DP World needed container capacity. But, as there was little room to expand, the terminal operator needed to be creative. Over the last couple of years, the terminal at Antwerp’s Deurganckdok was completely redesigned. The new build, which was built by DP World at a stone’s throw away from the old building, was a part of that plan.
A strip of leftover land of 4,200 square metres that could not be put to any other use was chosen for the new building. The way the building sits on the site is remarkable. It was built over a road, above terminal traffic, and factors such as high-voltage lines, railways, roads, tunnels, water and gas pipes also had to be taken into account. The architects handled this extremely creatively. The building has four storeys, one of which is underground. In the middle of the complex, we needed a cutout in order to maintain a safe distance from the high-voltage cables. A virtue of necessity was made and that cutout was turned into a beautiful rooftop terrace with a view over the entire terminal.
The entire outer layer of the building was designed as a curtain wall. Across the long sides, the façade staggers every floor with about 20 cm, with one façade jumping forward while the other one jumps back. The aluminium profiles are anodised with copper and the glass has a copper-coloured HP coating as well. This gives the building an industrial look.
The administrative office, the Planning department and management are on the two top floors. In addition, a car park with 260 spaces was provided, connected to the building with a 65-metre long footbridge so no roads need to be crossed. There are also charging points for electric cars and parking facilities for e-bikes. Because of the innovative heating techniques, the building is very energy-efficient. And it’s a real looker at the Deurganckdok. The architecture was inspired by stacked containers. This peculiar shape, the copper-coloured glass façade and the integrated lighting makes the building a noticeable beacon for the staff and visitors, day and night.
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