Project: Leerfabriek KVL art and craft studios
Architect: Diederen Dirrix architekten
Photographer: Hugo de Jong
What was once Europe’s biggest leather factory has been transformed by the Province of Noord-Brabant and the municipality of Oisterwijk into the Leerfabriek KVL: a collection of creative art and craft studios. This made it necessary to reconfigure the nationally listed building in such a way that it could house a diverse mix of creative activities. In addition to workshops, there is space for catering facilities, meetings and events.
Remco Mulder, architect at Diederendirrix, came up with the design: “The aim was to adapt a listed building for many different users whilst respecting the building’s history. That aim has been met. The industrial character of the building has been retained and complements its new role. The clients also set requirements regarding comfort and functionality. It was important to keep the open spaces, but at the same time adapt them to the needs of tenants, who also contributed to the design process. The shared rental of these spaces called for flexible solutions that also extended to the design of the ceilings.”
Master Matrix, Ecophon’s new acoustic ceiling panel system, was chosen for the entire building. Remco Mulder explains: “Master Matrix offers clear benefits over the panels we are familiar with. The Master Matrix frame structure makes it possible to create neatly aligned ceiling islands. In this case the ventilation and cable ducts were left exposed, underneath the ceiling rather than behind it. This accentuates the building’s industrial character. The Master Matrix panels also effectively absorb sound so that the tenants have a pleasant and comfortable environment in which to work.”
Jan de Weert, from the company Normakoestiek which fitted the ceilings, adds:
“The result with the Master Matrix panels is truly fantastic. They are the ideal panels for this situation. They are acoustically perfect, can be connected tightly together with a click-in system and the hinge function also makes it easy to remove them again.”
Tinus Aerts from Leerfabriek has this to say: “As tenants, we are more than satisfied with the acoustics. The inherent challenges have been met and all the parties involved worked smoothly and efficiently together.” Everybody is enthusiastic about the result. Leerfabriek KVL is an example of how listed buildings can be renovated on-site. The listed building has been given a new lease of life, including a comfortable acoustic environment, while its distinctive atmosphere has been retained.