Convention centre for Netherlands EU Presidency
When the Netherlands took over the Presidency of the European Union for six months from January 1, 2016, the Dutch government urgently required accommodation in Amsterdam where ministers, members of the European Commission and diplomats from across the continent could gather for the numerous policy and strategy meetings.
The last Dutch EU Presidency was in 2004, and 2016 again saw the Netherlands at the centre of the political limelight as they took on the role of Presidency as part of a rotating system among member EU states.
With no permanent buildings available in Amsterdam to host such a prestigious and long-term event, the Dutch Government appointed renowned temporary structure specialists Neptunus to solve the problem.
Neptunus, one of the world’s leading temporary structure companies, took just three months to build a state-of-the-art temporary convention centre behind the walls of Marine Land in Amsterdam on behalf of The Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The reusable ‘Europa Building’ consists of six temporary high-tech buildings with conference rooms, lounges, a theatre, interpreting booths and meeting rooms. A stunning ‘void’ has been created in the centre of the roof where an impressive bespoke 150 m2 atrium, with full height glass walls constructed beneath, forming a garden/courtyard area.
Exterior walls of the 8,000 m2 complex are decorated with façade decoration and 3D printed benches. The interior has a typical Dutch signature, almost museum-like with false ceilings partially decorated with a cloud print.
Despite the temporary nature of the complex, most visitors will not realise they are in a temporary building. The convention centre was created within three ultra-modern and energy efficient Evolution temporary structures, each linked by covered corridors.
Neptunus was responsible for coordinating the interior finish of the complex in collaboration with a team of subcontractors.
The project required 50 truck-loads of equipment to be delivered to the site with a team of 23 Neptunus technicians working during the first two weeks of the build process. Personnel numbers were gradually reduced as the building neared completion.
Although an immensely high profile and prestigious project, which required building in a very tight time, the Dutch Government also needed to ensure that the design and layout was sustainable with maximum energy efficiency.
As the main contractor, Neptunus was responsible for coordinating the entire project which involved overseeing all aspects of the interior finish including floors, lighting, water, power supply, restrooms, climate control, IT infrastructure and alarm and fire systems.
With energy efficiency a critical factor for the Dutch Government, solar panels installed on the roof provided the daily energy for the temporary complex.
Neptunus Director Dorrie Eilers said: “It is the most advanced temporary complex in the Netherlands, and we are proud of the end result.”
Han Maurits Schaapveld, Director Central Project EU Presidency 2016, said: "The design and layout of the building is as sustainable as possible including the use of solar panels. The building will be disassembled afterwards for use elsewhere which is in keeping with our vision with many of the internal furnishings being reused within the Dutch Government.”