Open air installation for the 5th International Architecture Biennale of Rotterdam.
Commissioned project
Client: Gemeente Rotterdam (Bureau Binnenstad) and ’Mothership’.
Location: Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
Year: 2012.


NAUTA architecture & research is one of 7 offices invited to design an open air installation during the 5th International Architecture Biennale of Rotterdam (IABR).
NAUTA’s “Unite d’ Habitation de Rotterdam” focuses on the “Shell Tower” at Hofplein, in the centre of Rotterdam. It envisions the possibility to redefine the use and role of this urban phantom by means of sustainable hybrid combinations, suitable for the current market trends that do not allow mono-functional developments in the city centre.

In 1947 Le Corbusier developed a housing principle called “Unité d’ Habitation”. The project used collective spaces, roof gardens and mixed facilities to improve the lifestyle of its inhabitants. “Unite d’ Habitation de Rotterdam” is a reflection on how simple and profitable it would be to apply some of those principles to enhance a better life and have a more beautiful city.

The installation was commissioned by the Gemeente Rotterdam/Bureau Binnenstad and the ’Mothership’. It will be displayed on the North sidewalk of Hofplein till the 12th of August 2012. More information can be found on the website of Mothership.

2012年4月,Nauta受邀在第五届鹿特丹国际建筑双年展中展出改建项目 “鹿特丹的马赛公寓” 。


Research project.
Research by design on the re-use of the post-war office legacy of Rotterdam.
Client: Municipality of Rotterdam, Bureau Binnenstad.
Grant: Stimuleringsfonds voor Architectuur.
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Year: 2011-2012

Research on the re-use of the post-war vacant office buildings in Rotterdam.
The study proposes an evaluation of the urban and architectural value of the vacant buildings, in order to reorganize and reuse their spaces, revitalize the city center, inject new economical and cultural value to the buildings and give the surrounding public space back to the city.
This study is based on a building evaluation chart from TU Delft, department of Real Estate.


Commissioned project.
Single family villa.
Client: private.
Total floor area: 328 sqm.
Budget: € 360.000.
Location: Mol, Belgium.
Design and realisation: 2008-2011.

This single family house is designed with the simple gesture of separating living and sleeping functions in two stacked volumes that create an L-shape. This configuration optimizes the sun orientation, yet opens the house to the internal private garden (not yet realized), while closing it on the street. The building is surrounded by a beautiful forest. For this reason, the used materials range from traditional local brick to afrormosia wood, both giving the house a warm cosy appearance.


EUROPAN 10 international urban planning competition
Masterplan for the mixed use redevelopment of Kanaleniland in Utrecht.
Program: Residential area with 250 housing units, divided into 4 low rise and 2 high rise typologies; design of central park, underground parking, retail and public space.
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Design: 2009.


EUROPAN 10 international urban planning competition.
Masterplan for the Liesing District in Vienna.
Program: 358 dwellings, combination of low rise and high rise types. Park, social and commercial activities, plan for a new train station.
Total planning area: 11 ha
Total floor area: 45.000 sqm.
Location: Vienna, Austria.
Design: 2009.

The realities that surround the project site become the base for our study. Its heterogeneous border conditions are astonishing and surreal: the agricultural allotments, their proximity to the centre and to Shönbrunn, a cemetery. We accept to compromise with the allotments and rather pursue their qualities to the extreme, in order to re-invent a unique lifestyle fitting the site. In this sense, we want to pursue the extreme agricultural condition by creating a striking contrast with its “shape and texture”.
Therefore we create a line of high rise elements, very slender and dynamic. The combination of two different densities becomes the key concept for the rediscovery of a new lifestyle and urban landscape. We base the whole master-plan on the collaboration of three main characters: the low rise area, the high rise and the central park. This last one becomes a mediator, an “urban event” which will transform Meidling-Liesing into a unique example for the coexistence of different lifestyles in the core of the capital city.


International architecture competition.
Design for a new  building for the Faculty of Architecture in Delft.
Data: 32.000 sqm of educational spaces, halls, exhibition and offices.
Location: Delft, The Netherlands
Design: 2008



Bouwkunde since ever has been representing a symbol of excellence and progress in Europe.
This faculty has been able to dialog on the same lever with major institutions like MIT, IIT, AA London, Columbia University and other well known architecture schools. Bouwkunde has been the “nest” for many generations of extremely talented architects that, as a matter of fact, have been incrementing the historical debate on architecture and can by right find a location into the history of this discipline.But most of all, Bouwkunde represented and still represents, an epicenter, a place where every student or architect eager of this discipline, wanted to be. A place capable to spread optimism and passion for our discipline. And this is why the fire on the faculty has moved emotionally an entire professional community;
because Bouwkunde represented a place and a symbol for growth, ambition, competition, interest, curiosity, passion.

We, architects are like truffle dogs: we hunt, smell, observe, we have an ever ending radar always pulsating like a hart, looking for new contents and development of society, because we shape the environment. Bouwkunde doesn’t need an icon, but cannot either loose its symbolic role. A place of alarm, where this word is not meant in its negative diction. Bouwkunde is like a fire station, a stock exchange, where every movement and happening in the world becomes debate and reason to question, where all issues coming from the outer world become arguments and consideration at the base of our environment. We are not static, we are in eternal movement. We need to move, to absorb. And we need to team up, because we need to fight, to discuss, to compete for ideals, to research better ways. Bouwkunde should be not only a place giving knowledge buy mostly PRODUCING knowledge.

In 1992 the 6th International Architecture Biennale of Venice, directed by Hans Hollein and entitled “The architect as a Seismograph”, touched the substance of this issue in a very effective way. We react to the cultural movements of our society, and for this reason, we need to introduce the same awareness and feeling into the student chrysalis, open and receptive, full of expectations toward the future profession.

For this reason the keyword for this process is CENTRALIZATION.
TU Delft can change the course of education not barely through a technological progress but maximizing a philosophy that so far has made this institution an international leader. The fire of the faculty was a disaster but we can look at it as an opportunity. Reformulating the potential gives us the responsibility to make even more powerful the main thing that Bouwkunde has always represented: OPTIMISM.

An institution representing progress and research has the delicate responsibility to preserve a certain range of “neutrality”, stay a sort of open field of experimentation, a permanent workshop that could leave freedom to each personality to develop an autonomous way of looking at design. But the architecture faculty represents at the same time a symbol for ideology and creativity. It is somehow “unfair” to neglect the visionary role of the architect, which by designing the future Bouwkunde, will unavoidably give an ideological message.

Bouwkunde needs to refine its educational tools, consolidate a farseeing philosophy, catch up alliances, maximize its openness and cultural emancipation, spread optimism and positive thinking toward architectural progress and experimentation. Bouwkunde will be the mirror of changes, but it will always stay the mirror of personality in architecture. Flexibility and neutrality have an effective role as long as they do not mortify our imagination; and all that Bouwkunde needs and will never stop needing, is effusing and feeding subjective imagination.



Since the origin of the university institution and of schools of superior education, art and architecture have been playing a very peculiar role within the planned buildings. Architecture has been always ling in between art, philosophy and science. Either as part of a technology campus or an institution offering studies in multiple fields, architecture, because of its duality, has played a peculiar urban role in the city. Cities with an older tradition in arts, where the historical city centre since a longer time has been the activity core of the city, the school of art and architecture has usually played a role in the centre of the city, keeping the cultural debate and the students, as much as possible in direct contact with the historical and architectural heritage. It is the case of old University Institutions like Cambridge, Vienna, Venice, Rome.

Often the faculty of architecture has been hosted in prestigious historical buildings, sometimes not even originally designed for that function.
In another relevant number of cases the faculty of architecture has been displaced from the campus, being localized in the right proximity of the centre within autonomous buildings which always contributed to make the location and function easy to identify (Madrid, Barcelona, Toronto, Berkley) . Another similar urban method has been applied by autonomous private schools, which try to keep their address as much as possible in the centre of the city, in order to link it to the cultural scene, make it easy to reach, and improve its promotional role (AA London, Barlet London, Berlage Institute Rotterdam). Finally, several Universities organize the different disciplines in buildings grouped in a masterplan. The “Campus” became the urban typology that activates a portion of the city by centralizing all the research and educational activities in one single area.

From the main American Universities, like MIT and Harvard in Boston, Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, IIT in Chicago and the University of California, to several European Universities like Helsinki, Porto, Lausanne, and TU Delft, till Asian Universities like Beijing, Tokyo and Singapore, the faculty of architecture finds its location in the proximity of the other technical faculties. The campus becomes a field on interaction and centralization of different professionals, contributing to knowledge sharing and the growth of collaboration and consultancy.

The old Bouwkunde building represented a real destination, being located at the end of the campus. We can find the reason of its peripheral location into the attractive and cultural power of architecture, a sort of catalyst between the disciplines, therefore capable to activate even the farthest portion of the campus. It is for this reason that, instead of spreading or relocating the building in another site, we propose to confirm its location and operate a reformulation of its role by relating it to the park and the whole surroundings. The building type itself wills to make the difference in enacting the symbolic role of this faculty within the campus.

Bouwkunde has the biggest number of students among the faculties of TU Delft. The fire event and the loose of that building stigmatize its epicenter role. We do not want to commemorate a site but to explore its potential, confident that, even without proposing a flag building, this place will be a cultural institution so powerful that it will even influence the flows and life of the whole campus park. The building destination melts into the park and becomes a cultural pivot, by fully opening the “opportunity forum” to the outside.


International architecture competition.
Program: Pavilion with flexible space for conferences, exhibitions, events.
Total floor area: 300 sqm.
Materialisation: Mixed structure plywood and float glass.
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom.
Design: 2008.

The Time Machine hosts simultaneously two spaces: two different happenings, two atmospheres, where the history and tradition of the region can meet the ambitions and innovation on the future. Two rooms for different opportunities, where young and older generations can meet, where past and new economies can share the same will to grow, where tradition can be preserved and become power.


International urban planning competition.
Masterplan, mixed use.
Program: Private and subsidized housing with dwelling types from 45 sqm to 210 sqm. Retail, ateliers, services. Waterfront landscape design.
Total floor area: 33.012 sqm.
Location: Amsterdam Buiksloterham, The Netherlands.
Design: 2007.

The north of Amsterdam is currently living a rejuvenation through a city planning strategy, in which the role of this portion of the city is transformed and improved for the coming future. After a long history of urban planning that saw the northern portion of Amsterdam partially excluded from its growth, the north will now see the flourishing of new developments for contemporary living districts, cultural centers, working complexes, entertainment and commercial facilities, suitable for a new dynamic Dutch generation.
In this context, the area of Buiksloterham plays a very important role, because of its predominant and high quality location; at the end of the Johan van Hasseltkanaal, right open on the Zijkanaal, the plot embraces the water, gaining an incredible urban connotation , still very naturalistic and traditional of the Dutch environment. For these reasons, in order to fulfill at once the local and urban ambition of the site, we decided to pursue a visionary image of the area through the definition of a master plan, capable to define, through the use of a clever matrix of urban elements, a new striking and unique identity for the neighborhood.
The three project areas collaborate to define a master plan, a new city within the city, in which the composition of micro environments offers changing atmospheres, multiple functional combinations, different building scale relationships and, at the same time, a unique, strong, visionary identity; a powerful sensitive tool to pursue the new pioneering role of the north.
While proposing a master plan for the area defined as “buildable” in this contest, we suggest the extension of the strategy to the two additional areas along the Johan van Hasseltkanaal, and the waterfront on the Zijkanaal. We want to demonstrate the validity of the strategy as self supporting for the three areas, as the city will choose to develop them. The master plan allows a collaboration of the sites searching for a flexible, still unique vision for the whole area. At the same time, the strategy offers autonomy to the three areas, making the intervention on the project site, still possible with no dependency on the others, because based on an urban, rather than architectural concept.
The main elements featuring the master plan are the parietal buildings, which constitute some sort of “filmic frame” for the district, and the inner low density “podium”.
The frame foresees the combination of different housing types, for different market targets. In light of this, the huge “portal building” on the south corner of the plot and its low rise development in front of the Zijkanaal, will perform the role of welcoming entrance to the district from the quay and will host types combining working and living with apartments for the free market.
The building on the Papaverweeg will host subsidized apartments in a “gallery slab”, open on the ground floor on pilotis in order to connect directly the district to the upper urban condition.
We generate our urban and architectural proposal by assuming the differences the program, typological, functional and above all social.
By stating and accepting the social combination, we accept a consequent architectural mixture, aiming to gain through this fusion quality, innovation, uniqueness and an exceptional identity.



33.000 平方米复合功能总体规划: 不同形式的私有与公共住宅 面积45平方米至210平方米不等
零售, 工作室, 服务,滨水景观设计
阿姆斯特丹 荷兰 2007

此次总体设计的主要元素就是周边的建筑, 他们形成了这个地块的边界, 暗示了中心地区的低密度特性。这些边界建筑考虑到不同的市场需求提供了不同的住宅类型。在这样的背景下, 地块南角的“门户建筑”以及Zirkannal运河边低层建筑将构成该地区的面向港口方向的入口, 同时将容纳面向自由市场的工作-生活公寓组团。位于Papaverweg街上的建筑将容纳一个画廊般的公用住宅。 建筑底层通过架空来实现本地块与周边环境的联系。



International design competition “Reclaiming the Street”
FINALIST, selected for second phase
Program: Reorganization of urban public spaces in order to create a place for multiple user groups including skateboarders.
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Year: 2010


Skateboarding is rightly considered by many a form of art more than a sport. Skateboarding is associated to other forms of urban art that have a long history to date. Street culture counts artists such as Any Warhol, Keith Haring, Jean Michel Basquiat till Jeff koons that found their main inspiration in the connection of art with everyday life. This popular translation of life into art generated a new way of thinking about the work of art: an object capable to talk to everybody and to create debate because of its iconic connection to the collective imaginary.
De Badkuip becomes a tridimensional translation of pop art. An object with no cultural links beside the bare use of the object itself in everyday life.
Using the organic shape of the bath tab is the most immediate action we can imagine to combine at the same time the curved surfaces of a skate park to an object immediately recognizable and ironic. With no doubt we want to translate the whole design task in a playful opportunity; an “event” capable to move the attention and the laugh of every passer-by, regardless his age, social background, mood.

De Badkuip (the Bathtub) can be plugged in every place. It is suspended from the ground, avoiding any obstacle on the urban space, rather offering a shelter, flexible to multiple uses (bus stop, canopy, etc). It is democratic because it doesn’t want to establish an intellectual or historical connection with the surroundings, keeping all times its role of contemporary piece of art.
Its introvert shape offers infinite opportunities of use: from skate shows to public events, concerts, open air cinema, exhibitions, disco party, political debates, every activity can be hosted in De Badkuip. Its shape allows its location in even extreme urban conditions, i.e. traffic connections, always preserving, if desired, a high range of privacy for the inner activities.
Based on the simple assembly of a steel frame, De Badkuip can be clad in aluminum, plywood (like the traditional skate modules), fiberglass or even recycled composite materials, according to the budget and the professional workforce used in the construction. It is a fast buildable structure that, because of its freestanding form, can be easily moved from place to place, preserving its essence of flexible work of art. Sustainability is provided my the possibility of reusing the object several times and in several locations, and by its minimal site transformation (it stands on four legs).
De Badkuip is willing to spread irony and optimism in our cities, even more in a delicate period like the one we live now, when social, political and economical troubles afflict our daily routine.


International architecture competition.
Data: Single family house in the wood. Housing type flexible for different clients, environmentally self sustainable.
Budget: 150.000 euros.
Client: CASLA & Comité ‘De Fantasie’.
Location: Almere, the Netherlands.
Design: 2006

Building a single family house with a low budget in a forest, yet, offering a contemporary life style to the inhabitants, comfort, privacy and space quality.
Our strategy is based on the combination of two very simple concepts and technologies: a traditional durable brick house and a glass house. These two are combined and reinterpreted in a way that will offer practical use of the spaces, privacy and communal life, as well as a new material perception of a traditional Dutch building technology: the brick construction.
The house is divided in two volumes. The separation of the two bands allows the definition of two functional domains that live from the interaction with each other. The space in between hosts a winter garden which becomes a connector, not only for flows, but for activities, giving the possibility to improve the inhabitable space of the house, without the costs coming from building a third functional band.
We believe that the winter garden becomes a secret gift to the owners of the house, additional space that can host the personal desires of every inhabitant, old or young. At the same time it is a tool that unables the designers to adapt the scheme to different potential clients that would be interested in investing in this house.
The connector is the space that gives logic to every functional scenario: a couple, a family with children, a single worker, two housemates.
All these potential clients could benefit by a configuration of the scheme that, every time would fit their requirements and still offer an exciting unique space.