Construction has started on the €49.9m Port House, the new headquarters for the Antwerp Port Authority on the Kattendijk Dock in Belgium, designed by the UK-based Zaha Hadid Architects.
The new headquarters will be a two-part design featuring a beam-shaped structure raised above the former fire station.
The structure’s facade will feature glass triangles, which will be slightly rotated with respect to each other, to create a constantly changing play of reflected light, said Zaha Hadid Architects.
Belgium-based Victor Buyck Steel Construction is the subcontractor responsible for the 1500-ton steel structure.
Victor Buyck will use a modular construction of six large elements that will be prefabricated in Wondelgem and transported to Antwerp by barge.
Upon its completion, the new building will help the port authority by addressing space constraints in the present headquarters, and by featuring landscape offices and meeting rooms which will be accessible from a central atrium. The building will also feature open-plan offices, an auditorium and a restaurant, which staff and visitors will be able to access via lifts.
Flemish Minister of Transport and Public Works Hilde Crevits said that the new Port House design will give Antwerp an architectural jewel that matches its position and importance as a world port.
"Along with the MAS museum and the new Port House, the new Antwerp Coordination Center will further consolidate this position," Crevits said.
"In functional terms the new coordination centre will bring together all the actors in the chain of shipping traffic management physically on a single platform."
Construction work on the headquarters is scheduled to take two years and nine months.
Image: Port House will be a two-part design featuring a beam-shaped structure raised above the former fire station. Photo courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects.