This building, 'Matrix One' is almost 100% dismantleable and reusable

A new BREAAM-excellent certified building is energy-efficient and its component can be 90% dismantled and reused.
Christopher McFadden
The building can be 90% dismantled and reused, if needed.


A groundbreaking new building has just been completed in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. "Matrix One" was purpose-built as a laboratory and office building to be easily dismantled, reused, or remodeled internally. The property is also very energy-efficient and comes with other novel innovations that make it one of the most sustainable buildings on the planet.

The Matrix Innovation Center in Amsterdam Science Park comprises seven buildings, with "Matrix One" being the largest. Because of its design ethos, the building provides an excellent environment for scientists and entrepreneurs to collaborate and develop sustainable solutions for present and future challenges.

The building has a vast interior area of 140,000 foot2 (13,000 m2), spread across six floors. It is home to various tech and sustainability firms, such as Qualcomm, Photanol, and Skytree. It incorporates what the architects have called a "social staircase," which has several seating points and tables for informal meetings and coffee breaks. For soundproofing, the interior design features green walls and soft-felt finishes. Additionally, the central atrium is spacious and naturally illuminated with large skylights. A restaurant, bar, and 100-seat auditorium can also be found on the ground floor.

"Matrix One," constructed by MVRDV, was designed with flexibility in mind. The building can be easily reconfigured or dismantled, thanks to accessible screws and bolts for fastening and exposed air ducts for maintenance. Interior walls can be moved or removed, enabling diverse interior layouts to suit evolving needs. An online materials database has also been implemented to track the approximately 120,000 building components and their relevance for future reference.

"Matrix One offered an excellent opportunity to test several of the carbon-reduction strategies we have long been investigating at MVRDV," stated MVRDV partner Frans de Witte. "The building is state-of-the-art now, but it also acknowledges that the state-of-the-art is constantly changing. So we made both the interior spaces and the technical installations that serve them as flexible as possible; offices can easily be modified to become labs and vice versa, and labs can be easily upgraded with new systems to accommodate changing standards. In the decades to come, when the building is no longer cutting-edge, it will become a source to harvest materials from for other buildings.," he added.

Matrix One has implemented a sustainable solution to decrease its reliance on grid-based electricity by installing a solar panel array, which spans over 10,700 ft2 (1,000 m2) on its roof. Additionally, the roof features a significant amount of greenery to enhance insulation. To monitor power consumption, lighting, and heating usage are closely monitored, and the building's design incorporates natural light and ventilation to maximize energy efficiency.

The building features a water retention tank that stores rainwater and promotes eco-friendliness. Additionally, the interior design encourages physically capable individuals to take the stairs instead of elevators. Furthermore, a bike parking facility exists for those who cycle to work. The project has earned the prestigious BREAAM-Excellent green building certification for its energy-efficient design.

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