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Hyper-modern homes with a hint of the Middle Ages

The new housing development at Hoogdalem in Gorinchem, the Netherlands, lives and breathes respect for the past. And that is not without influence from the strict planning regulations. Yet, three hyper-modern homes are real exceptions. Although, architect Dick van den Dool does not disrespect history in the slightest way.

Design full of historical references

To say the least, it takes quite a dose of courage to challenge the strict aesthetic quality plan with this contemporary design. And yet the architect had a convincing story because his design refers in many ways to the rich history of the ‘Nieuwe Hollandse Waterlinie’ (a military defence line that marked the administrative and economic heart of the Netherlands)’.

Architect Dick van den Dool: “The flat roof refers to the bunkers and the vertical wooden facade cladding makes one think of the battle shields that shooters once sheltered behind. The Renson Cilium folding louvres appear very similar to the shutters that were opened for putting cannons into position.” 

Folding louvres aiming at Loevestein Castle

The three homes, designed by Dick van den Dool, refer directly to the firing line of Loevestein Castle looming on the horizon, and are thus a perfect reference to the Middle Ages, according to the architect. Tightly fit in line with the bladed strips on the facade, they do not stand out when closed. When the sun is low, the interior of the home is not blinded with sunlight, while the heat of the sun is still utilised optimally. And when fully opened, they serve as an awning above the window, providing shade when the sun is at its highest, while you can still enjoy the full view.

Theft deterrent and windproof

“The Cilium folding louvres drop into a slot when closing” Hans Bannink (a Renson technical-commercial consultant) reminds us. “And that is a real asset when it comes to discouraging theft and for wind resistance. The standard model has aluminium Sunclips blades, but the frames can also carry Trespa or wooden blade cladding, up to a maximum of 40 kg per louvre