Utrecht University in The Netherlands has installed a custom-made, TQM manual revolving door at the entrance to the school’s newest addition, the Viktor J. Koningsberger building, dedicated to the faculties of Geosciences, Science and Medicine.
Renowned Rotterdam-based architects, Ectory Hoogstad, were asked to create a building at Utrecht University that would serve as an addition to two other existing buildings: the Minnaert building and the Buys Ballot building. Joost Ector, Director and Project Architect, explains, "All buildings had to be combined into one educational center for the science faculties. We solved that very simply by making a kind of 'loop' on the first floor; a circuit that runs through all the buildings. A new building has been added on the corner, and that is what has become the Koningsberger building. Through the 'walk' all buildings are now connected, and the students can easily walk from one building to another.”
Functional and Aesthetic Design
The central themes in the design of this iconic building are lightness, openness and transparency. These properties are reflected in the façade and play an important role at the main entrance. "Of course we want you to be able to enter the cluster of buildings from all sides of the campus easily,” says Ector. “So the new entrance had to be functional and recognizable, but also belong to the story of the building as a whole. You walk down to the building, make that little turn through the entrance and then you suddenly see that the big atrium going up a hundred times. We just love that!"
Selecting the Entry
When it came to selecting the entrance to the new building addition, Ector said his choice for the revolving door came naturally. “Once we decided to go with a manual revolving door, there was obviously only one name that stood out - and that was Boon Edam. We knew that Boon Edam made premium products and was capable of doing what we needed when it comes to these kinds of custom-made solutions. We came to our final solution after close consultation with their experts."
The TQM manual revolving door installed at the Koningsberger building is nine meters (29-1/2 feet) high and is constructed almost entirely of glass. Nine-meter high rotating parts were not desirable, so a different solution was chosen. A special tall, illuminated cylinder was installed above the revolving door for an impressive and recognizable appearance. "Our inspiration were old houses, such as canal houses,” explains Ector. “There is sometimes a kind of 'lantern' incorporated in the skylight above the front door in these old-fashioned homes. We utilized this in the TQM revolving door. The cylinder was pulled upwards, and an illuminated element was manufactured. This constructed feature can be seen from both the outside and inside and serves as a beacon of light in the evening to help guide and locate the entrance."
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