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De Krook is nestling in the urban fabric of Ghent city

It’s becoming ever more clear these past few months how De Krook will fit in the urban fabric of Ghent (Belgium). Construction is at full force. As in a few weeks, the first books will be moved. At the end of 2016, the new city library will open its doors. VK Architects & Engineers designed the M&E Engineering, façade engineering and the sustainable concept.

Urban integration

Work is visibly making progress. The strips decorating the facades give a clear impression of the finalised building, a design of Coussée & Goris and RCR Aranda Pigem Vilalta Arquitectes. Also emerging, are the interventions that will integrate the building in its urban context. The new Miriam Makebasquare in front of the main entrance is being finalised. The foot and cycling bridge spanning the Muinkschelde river to the Kuiperskaai has been there for a while now. The public space around the building, as well as the quays, promise a new place to linger in the university town.

Integrated sustainability

Especially on the inside, there’s a bustling scene. All technical installations are being completed, after a design by VK Architects & Engineers. In September 2015, the contractors started on the top floor. De Krook will be a sustainable project thanks to a thoroughly integrated approach. Below the building, a energy storage field has been dug out, a total of 26 probes each 150 metres long. A reversible heat pump provides heating and passive cooling. A balanced ventilation installation system D with heat wheel recuperates 70% of the produced heat. These interventions reduce the CO2 emissions by 38%. De Krook will also be connected to the city network.

The final aim is a primary energy consumption of 91 kWh/m²/year.