Benthem Crouwel Architects has a longstanding tradition designing projects that promote connectivity – contributing both to the logistic workings of the world and to the structures of social interaction.
Our infrastructural and transit projects come in all shapes and sizes: from large airports to bridges, from train and bus stations to facilities for slow traffic. What these hubs and infrastructural nodes have in common is that they need to be as clear and easy to navigate as possible. We believe in the self-evidence of navigation, made possible by a careful, thoughtful layout and concept. Instead of lots of signs that tell you what to do, you find your way naturally thanks to the use of (day)light, straightforward routing and strong visual connections.
Transit will always be a necessary part of our society and therefore, will continue to have huge impact on our climate and on our quality of life. For our close-knit urban areas to work we need highly efficient and high quality public transport hubs that are so safe and enjoyable that they become the commuter’s first choice. Located in the hearts of our cities, these hubs are emerging as part of the public space – hotspots not just used by travelers but serving as a destination themselves. We design them as hubs that make connecting to all other modes of transport and to the city itself effortlessly easy, spaces that are a joy to dwell in, safe and comfortable. Public transport so well-designed it can actually change people’s minds and behavior. You cannot force transit on people, they have to choose it.
With every assignment, the user is always our first frame of reference. People travel and move around for all sorts of reasons. The family going on holiday has a different mindset than the commuter who is facing a day at the office. It’s our responsibility to provide the best and most uplifting travel experience for all of them. Our architecture creates a sense of place and a sense of arrival, putting people at ease. It’s unique in how it doesn’t focus on itself but unpretentiously serves the user, with pragmatic solutions that give all stakeholders the biggest bang for their buck.
These transit hubs are obvious connectors, but for us, connectivity is about much more than infrastructure. Our buildings create miniature societies, drawing together neighborhoods and boosting human interaction. Like our transit hubs our offices and public buildings focus on optimal people flows and the wellbeing of their users, facilitating both expected and surprising encounters. Focusing on the elemental human desire to connect and be connected, we as architects can be game changers when it comes to creating future proof cities and outstanding working and living environments - a more sustainable and livable future for everyone.