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In early 2016, the psychologists from the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences will be moving into the former laboratory building at Nieuwe Prinsengracht. Renovation of this property is currently in full swing. The demolition work has been completed and reconstruction has commenced to give the building a new layout and design. Extensive consultations have taken place between the project team, the faculty and the new users in order to create good workspaces within specific frameworks.

The former laboratory building at Nieuwe Prinsengracht.

The original building contained a number of relatively large office spaces, some of which are now being subdivided. 'The new users are keen to have individual workspaces and their own consultation areas', says project leader Bas van Stratum. 'However, this ambition cannot be achieved because the total floor space in the new accommodation is more limited than in the psychologists' current office space.'

Extensive consultation

Bearing in mind that they will have to manage with less floor space, the available options have been explored. In order to meet the psychologists' wishes as much as possible, extensive consultations took place between the team of users and the architect. Bas says: ‘Sometimes these were heated discussions. It was an intricate puzzle for the architect. But everyone is happy with the final layout.'

Mix of smaller and larger offices

'We found a solution with a mix of smaller and larger offices with separate consultation rooms. Just as in the FMG building on Nieuwe Achtergracht, here also most staff members will be sharing their office space with immediate colleagues,' says Tom Verhoek, who was involved in the renovation as part of the FMG faculty office. He sees the result as a joint effort by all parties.

Every specialism has its own wing

Verhoek feels that the layout of the building is well suited to the organisational structure of Psychology: 'Each programme group will have its own wing, so colleagues will have easy and frequent contact.' The basement will contain office space and teaching facilities. The front and back office of the Graduate School will be given an easily accessible and visible location near the brand new joint entrance for LAB and the Psychology building.