Minnaert building, Utrecht

Opdrachtgever University Utrecht Architect Architects NeutelingsRiedijk

Contribution Bureau Bouwkunde Nederland:

  • advice preliminary design and final design
  • construction preparation drawings
  • coordination advisors
  • performance drawings
  • management

The elongated Minnaert building partly consists of three floors. Halfway through the building, it skews at an oblique angle to five floors. The facade is load-bearing and consists of a prefab concrete inner sheet.


The outside is made of shotcrete which is applied to a surface of stainless steel mesh. Iron oxide has been added to the shotcrete, which causes the rust-red color. Here and there a “fold” is made in the skin by means of a plastic rib under the gauze. This gives an effect as if the building is wrapped in a slightly too spacious jacket. Heated alcoves were placed in the hall. So it is still pleasant to sit in the otherwise unheated hall. The alcoves are equipped with benches, covered with red plush that gives a cozy impression and contrast with the cool marble of the hall.

As a tribute to the man who gave his name to the building, it is partly based on silver letters that form the word “Minnaert”. These storey-high letters are part of the supporting structure and replace normal columns. The entrance of the building leads up a staircase to a large room. Here is a large rainwater collection basin, which is used for flushing toilets. The basin is also used for cooling the building, which made it possible to save on the installations.

See also