The idea / The concept
The idea of the project stemmed from recreating an unorganized parking lot into a multimodal transport hub for hard and soft mobility and a meeting space. The initial proposal comprised a shed for each function, a bus stop, bike station, car park, and a public restroom. The functions were then grouped into one entity to grant space for seating and planted areas thus rendering Kiem a public space. The steel shading bars were used not only for shading, but also for defining an architecturally dynamic piece that caters to each user. The exterior area is marked by a modular and homogeneous pattern that spreads from the largest detail to the smallest. Signage and construction details were conceived in a way that achieves the desired purity and seamlessness with the use of advanced technology.

The first phase of the project entailed diverting the pedestrian and cycling paths into the bus stop to ease mobility for all. Sidewalks were also reshaped to ease access for disabled people with lighting fixtures and traffic signals placed to ensure maximal safety for all users. Ease of access is a defining factor that guided the placement of functions, as the bike station is placed close to the bike path, the parking spots south of the site, on Rue Kiem to divert traffic from the main road. The rest area is immediately next to the bus stop with the WC next to it. This also allows for a good separation between the circulation and the seating areas. Moreover, only 2 existing trees were removed, but 9 planters were built with species indigenous to the area of Capellen.

Sustainability / Materials / Technologies
Place de Kiem stewards environmental and societal sustainability by favoring soft mobility and sustainable construction techniques. The parking area features a charging station for electric cars and a parking space for people with reduced mobility. A Vel’Oh (governmental initiative for electric bike rentals) station was also integrated along with 2 boxes for parking bikes. One of the benches is photovoltaic and allows users to charge their phones. 9 trees were planted for shading and to organize the space. Furthermore, local concrete was used in the project. Throughout the different phases of the project, we followed a rigorous program of communal meetings to ensure that it meets the comfort of nearby citizens.

Strengths and characteristics
Achieving a minimalist and harmonious integration of all elements guided the design process. A trapezoidal pattern defines exterior elements, such as the paving, planters, benches, and wall finishes and unifies their function and materiality. The 5 planters in the park area have pentagonal shapes reminiscent of the shed, with drainage and ventilation pipes integrated into its soil. The circulation axis distributes the rooms in the shed, which are shaded with white steel bars that follow the height of each function, thus creating different angles. The 30×100 hollow bars hide the cables and pipes in the project to offer a clean outcome and are bolted with white screws and seamlessly intersect the paving with precut holes. While the bus stop is semi glazed, bikes can either be stored in the Mbox, which allows for bikes to be stacked on top of each other, or in the open box which includes a bench. The WC is covered with grey Trespa panels that follow the paving pattern. Ramps and tactile tiles were added to the sidewalk for accessibility, and the signage was implemented with an easily read color code. Information boards and electric screens are installed to offer updated information on bus times and bike rentals. Furthermore, the 10 parking spots include 2 charging stations, 2 rental spots, and one disabled parking spot. Bollards and corner signs define each parking spot, with lighting poles for added safety. A fountain is also installed to provide drinking water for travelers.

Architecture offices involved in the design :
Beng Architectes Associés

Location :
Rue du Kiem
L-8328 Capellen-Mamer

Design year :
2019 to 2021

Year Completed :


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