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New NATO headquarters has been delivered

After six-and-a-half years, the largest construction site of Europe gradually draws to an end. Later this month, the iconic design by SOM-Assar will be honoured with a visit from American president Donald Trump, for the formal transfer of the building. VK Architects & Engineers took charge of the sustainable design and all engineering.

The figures make this project a European record holder, being the largest construction site, and having the largest zinc roof covering.

A village in its own

The headquarters will offer room for over 4,000 collaborators and takes some 500 visitors per day into consideration. It has varying facilities at its disposal, allowing for collaborators to have all their needs met on site. Because even though the main building draws most attention, the site also houses other volumes for varying functions.

The block for industrial infrastructure contains all logistics and technical support. All utilities are bundled here, including a boiler room and the emergency power units. Besides these obvious elements, the building also contains extended workplaces for daily maintenance and repairs. These are performed by dedicated NATO staff, as a security measure. Besides a service station for the maintenance of the fleet of cars, the industrial infrastructure houses a carpentry, plumbery, painters workplace …

Another volume contains the Staff Centre. It offers collaborators on site a varied range of sports, leisure and other facilities. Evidently a restaurant and cafeteria, but also a bank and shops. The extensive sports facilities include courts for tennis, squash, basketball, volleyball, a bowling alley and a swimming pool. The pool water and shower water is heated with 250 sqm of solar panels.

Besides the 2 eating places in the Staff Centre, the main building provides another 7 locations, ranging from restaurants and cafeterias to snack bars. Taking into consideration that 65% of the occupancy rate will have a meal, this amounts to 3,000 meals – per day. Depending on the location, the food travels between between preparation kitchens underground, finishing kitchens on the ground floor and the serving locations. A well thought-out vertical transport ensures that the food gets easily distributed.

Underground bustle

All buildings are linked by means of an underground services tunnel. With two floors, the tunnel separates the circulation of people and goods from the technical services running between the industrial infrastructure and the headquarters.

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