“ Creating a place where knowledge and talent accumulate.”
“ Creating a place where knowledge and talent accumulate.”
NSI and ING Real Estate have joined forces on the 35,000 sqm redevelopment at Laanderpoort in Amsterdam Southeast, in the heart of the new Cumulus Park innovation district adjacent to ING’s new headquarters.
Cumulus Park aspires to be an incubator for collaborative innovation, attracting and inspiring the brightest minds and talents from all over the world. NSI and ING aim to add a unique building to this upcoming and vibrant district. “We envision a building that is unlike any other property in the Cumulus District,” said Wilko Andrik, Development Manager at NSI and Peter Mostien, Strategic Real Estate Manager at ING Real Estate.
Ticking the boxes
Development is a new activity for NSI. In the current market with limited supply and rising valuations of prime assets, it gets harder to find existing assets in good locations at reasonable yields. Development projects can offer better prospective returns, also on a risk-adjusted basis, if managed well. NSI has the right balance sheet and financing in place and is keen on mitigating development risks by selecting the right location, securing pre-letting arrangements and working with reputable partners. Laanderpoort, the first project in NSI’s million development pipeline to commence, ticks all the boxes: it is strategically located on the doorstep of Amsterdam Bijlmer Arena train station, it is pre-let to ING, and ING Real Estate is a strong development partner.
Developing in partnership
The aspiration level of this joint development is high in every respect. “It has to be a fusion of a creative breeding ground and an innovative office that appeals to all who visit and use the district,” said Peter Mostien. Wilko Andrik, added: “This development goes beyond building an office. It is about creating a place where knowledge and talent accumulate, where innovation is taken to the highest level.” The capex for the project is estimated at around € 120 million, which means that this asset is expected to become NSI’s largest asset on completion taking the current book value of around €40 million and the development costs into account. ING will lease around 31,000 sqm for a period of 15 years and NSI will operate a version of its in-house HNK flex office brand in the remaining 4,000 sqm. This would enable HNK to accommodate fintech and other start-ups and scale-ups that want to be close to ING.
Peter Mostien and Wilko Andrik explained how they managed to turn their broad vision into a briefing for a design that suits all requirements. “Stakeholder management is key,” Wilko said. The project started off with a profound and comprehensive preparation phase in which the views of all key stakeholders were aligned. This resulted in three guiding principles, helping the team to translate the more abstract higher purpose into practical tactics.
Experience & Connection
The first guiding principle is Experience & Connection. The future building is envisioned to be a ‘district connector’. That means that having a strong connection from the outside to the inside of the building is vital. The entrances should be inviting, warm and publicly accessible, creating a vibrant and lively atmosphere. Peter Mostien explained: “By breaking down traditional barriers between organisations and visitors, we feel we can stimulate collaboration between them.”
Future-proof & Sustainability
The second guiding principle is Future-proof & Sustainability. “This is the most significant challenge of our time,” said Wilko Andrik. “Future proof design does not only refer to using sustainable materials, but also entails creating a building that is capable of coping with future technological developments and changing needs of office users and visitors in the next decades. It should offer flexibility in the broadest sense, in functionality and capacity. In other words, the building needs to be able to host other occupiers in the future if ING were to leave at some point. We therefore look at designs that support multi-tenant occupation and not only the single tenant option in which ING will initially use it.”
Moreover, the municipality of Amsterdam sees the Bijlmerdreef, the street on which Laanderpoort is located, becoming the most sustainable street of the future. So this has been taken into account in the plans for Laanderpoort. “Mobility is a key aspect in this. Cyclists and pedestrians will be well catered for, as will public transport, while cars will be pushed to the periphery,” Peter Mostien said.
Functional & Flexible
The last guiding principle is Functional & Flexible. ING wants to promote flexible ways of working and ensure that employees from different teams and offices as well as external partners can work together easily. “We aim to create enthusiasm and a dynamic between the user groups,” said Peter Mostien.
Delivery in 2024
The architect and design will be selected in the first quarter of 2020, after which an extensive preliminary planning phase will follow which include gaining the necessary approvals from the municipality of Amsterdam. Demolition of the existing structure is foreseen for the first quarter of 2022, with start of the new development scheduled for shortly thereafter. The delivery date is forecasted for the second half of 2024.
Cumulus Park is a collaborative innovation district in Amsterdam Southeast, a vibrant mixed-use submarket of Amsterdam full of ambition and growth that will develop in the coming years. An initiative of ING, the district is now supported by the municipality of Amsterdam, the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Amsterdam intermediate education centre (ROC).
Cumulus Park offers a network, inspiration, processes and physical spaces for new generations of students, corporates and mid-corporates, innovators, researchers and local entrepreneurs. From a green park to the faculties of the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and the Amsterdam ROC, and from a globally oriented restaurant concept to offices where workspaces are designed to co-create, learn, research and inspire.