The Stairs to Kriterion

The Stairs to Kriterion are a nod to 75 years of rebuilding Rotterdam. The temporary exhibition offers an impressive landmark for the cultural event ‘Rotterdam celebrates the city!’. The scaffolding responds to the angles of the Rotterdam Central Station, connecting the contemporary icon with a historic monument, whilst through its construction referencing the reconstruction that the city has experienced.

Facts

Location: Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Year: 2016

Client: Rotterdam Viert de Stad!

Program: 29m tall, 57m long, temporary installation

 

About

The arrival of The Stairs, a month-long temporary installation celebrating 75 years of reconstruction in Rotterdam, follows the city's tradition of celebrating reconstruction milestones. Large cultural events often provide beautiful vantage points, such as the Euromast, which was built for the Floriade in 1960 and the cable cars on the Coolsingel for the reconstruction event C70. “Now we create a new lookout where people can enjoy the unique views of this newly built city. From the cranes in the harbour to the new city centre, the North and Blijdorp Zoo. Fun for everyone,” says Anouk Estourgie of ‘Rotterdam celebrates the city!’.

The steps not only offer a progression of perspectives over the city as you climb, but also give access to the roof of the Groot Handelsgebouw. Once at the top, a temporary observation deck gives you the opportunity to overlook the entire city. Also on the roof is the former cinema Kriterion, popular in the 1960s, which will open specially for the event to offer a wide variety of films, debates and performances. Furthermore, visitors will be able to enjoy refreshment facilities and find out more about the city and its development at the information point for the cultural event ‘Rotterdam celebrates the city!’.

At 29 metres tall and 57 metres long, The Stairs offer an impressive landmark for ‘Rotterdam celebrates the city!’. The scaffolding responds to the angles of the Rotterdam Central Station, connecting the contemporary icon with a historic monument, whilst through its construction referencing the reconstruction that the city has experienced.

Credits

Design: MVRDV - Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs and Nathalie de Vries

Design Team: Winy Maas, Jan Knikker with Gijs Rikken, Fedor Bron, Mark van den Ouden and Arian Lehner

Visualization: Antonio Luca Coco, Paolo Mossa Idra and Davide Calabro

Partners

Scaffolding: Dutch Steigers 

Construction: Adviesbureau Dekker Engineering

Images: Ossip van Duivenbode

Movies: #donotsettle, Rob van Pelt

We were informed that ten years ago West8 had created a temporary stair made of scaffolding leading onto the roof-top of Las Palmas, a striking historic building in Rotterdam. There are similarities between the two stairs, so we want to credit Adriaan Geuze,  West 8 and DaF for this wonderful idea. In our design process, e started with the dream of a permanent escalator which then turned into a temporary project made of scaffolding. Dutch construction legislation then made the stair into the current design. Even though we did not copy the stair design by our colleagues, we still want to express our respect for the earlier project and its makers.

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