Murphy, Jahn: European Union Headquarters, Brussels, Belgium, 1994-1998

Brussels, Belgium,


The European Union is rapidly changing trends in contemporary architecture, which were limited to local areas until recently. In the past few years the culture of design has become increasingly oriented toward bringing together different experiences to permit investigation in new directions.

Murphy, Jahn: European Union Headquarters, Brussels, Belgium, 1994-1998 The expansion of the complex resulted in new definition of architectural masses establishing a more direct dialogue with the surrounding environment. The solution had to have minimum impact so as not to disturb the already fragile balance of the city: the only way to do this was with glass walls.

The new building is covered with a thin "skin", a curtain wall which reflects the characteristics of its location and completely blends in with its surrounding context: after all, Brussels is a cosmopolitan city rich in contrasts and its architecture must mirror the cultural variety the city contains.
The building's characteristic plan demonstrates a clearly dynamic trend, emphasised by the arrow-shaped configuration of one side of the complex, which is thus adapted to suit the natural slope of the land.
The base of the building, on which the entire structure rests, has a number of different functions; it includes the main entrance with its all-glass walls mediating between the construction and the urban space surrounding it.
Floriana De Rosa

Link: http://www.murphyjahn.com/english/frameset_intro.htm

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