MFA Noorderhuis

Noordeloos, NL

How do you design a compact building in a village?



Noordeloos is a village in the South Holland municipality of Giessenlanden. This is where De Zwarte Hond was selected to design a new mixed-use building: the Noorderhuis. It accommodates a school, a gymnastics hall, a child care centre, a day nursery, a community centre, a library and even a chapel of rest. All under one roof, or rather three roofs! Morevover It is energy neutral. The design also includes the schoolyard and the village square. The compact building must be situated so as not to obstruct the view of nearby dwellings. The sustainability requirement of the building is high, it will be a future-proof and energy-neutral building.

Energy neutral and multifunctional


Ground Floor

First Floor

In order to make maximum use of the plot, the three “houses” have been squeezed together, if it were. A suitable location has been found for all functions. The entrance is designed to stimulate interaction between indoors and outdoors, for example on summer days and during festivities. And indoors, too, offers many opportunities for interaction. Areas in the community centre can be closed off or connected with each other by using folding partitions. For example, the stairway in the central hall can also serve as a tribune for the theatre. The windows and the roof lights ensure an abundance of natural light shining into the entire building and a broad view of the surroundings.

MFA Noorderhuis

Somewhat south of the river Lek, just beyond the provincial border between Utrecht and South Holland, the village of Noordeloos is located. Behind a row of trees you see a beautiful wooden facade. It turns out to be three subtly intertwined buildings, which together form the Noorderhuis. It accommodates a school, a gymnastics hall, a child care centre, a day nursery, a community centre, a library and even a chapel of rest all under one roof, or rather three roofs, and it is also energy neutral. Due to the choice of materials and the sloping roofs the building fits in nicely with the village and the rural surroundings. The school playground is on one side of the building, the village square on the other. Both squares have a view over the village and the polder. The Noorderhuis is a meeting point for the entire village, from young to old, indoors and outdoors. The building is energy neutral, with an Energy Performance Coefficient of 0. Heat and cold storage provides heating and cooling in the building. Moreover, the compact design ensures efficient energy use. A large part of the roof surface, 540 square metres, is covered with solar panels. The visible roofs are green, serving insulation and water storage. The entire building has outstanding heat insulation. The materials used are also sustainable: timber – especially the Siberian larch used here – has significantly less impact on the environment than other building materials.


MFA Noorderhuis
Noordeloos, NL
Werkgroep Noorderhuis
Catering & Retail, Culture, Education
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