Alkmaar’s new Cultural Centre on strategically situated Canadaplein square on the edge of the historical town centre houses the Municipal History Museum, the Central Library and the Artiance Music School. The architectural challenge was to combine three different functions in one building on a narrow site, and integrate an existing structure: the former 1970’s Interkruis building. Although comprising one volume with a common auditorium, the design preserves the individuality of the three institutions, which are set side by side in an east-west array so that each faces onto the main square.
The library to the south is largely contained in the former Interkruis building. Warm materials like Oregon pine and sandy-coloured linoleum give it a restful, comfortable atmosphere. A succession of patios and cleverly arranged empty spaces allow daylight to penetrate deep into the building.