The former grounds of Vitesse football club were earmarked by the city of Arnhem as a new residential area. The site is divided into two parts. One larger area, situated at a lower level, has been built up with mostly one-family houses. The second part, situated on an elevated area, is built up with detached buildings. The hill separating the two parts is an ecological zone. MVSA built two projects on both sides of the ecological zone: six residential buildings with 42 apartments (Minerva) on the lower part and three residential buildings with 24 apartments (Apollo) on the elevated ground.
The ‘Minerva’ project is located on a slope on the edge of the site. In order to give full expression to the green and undulating character of the site, six building volumes were arranged perpendicular to the slope. Allowing the blocks to ‘float’ above ground level accentuates the height difference across the terrain and maximises the contrast between the built and the natural. The balconies of the apartments are contained within the envelope of the building volumes so that the quality of the landscape is retained as far as possible. In addition, the parking spaces are located beneath the buildings and are therefore concealed from view.
The gallery extending across the northern sides and the graphic treatment of the facades reinforce the horizontal character of the complexes. The printed glass used on the facades partly reflects the surroundings, and also reveals the layered facade composition: the foil on the external walls, and the recessed balconies, stairwells and lift shafts. Inside, the natural surroundings are echoed in the use of wood in all spaces, with the exception of the apartments themselves.