A family home in one of the greenest buildings in Amsterdam and which won’t set you back more in mortgage payments than you would pay in rent? A home with its own garden and great views, which is just a few minutes from Schiphol airport and the city centre?
Too good to be true? Next year, developer Heijmans will start work on Vertical, a new residential project in Amsterdam west, which, the company says, is the place for modern families who want the convenience of city living but are interested reducing their environmental footprint as much as possible.
The first tranche of homes has already been sold but the second batch is now up for grabs. You can sign up via the Amsterdam Vertical website.
A short bike ride from Amsterdam’s Westerpark and the ‘real’ countryside, Vertical will have 144 homes ranging from compact garden lofts to family homes with three bedrooms and two bathrooms. So far, so good. But the Vertical project is special for a number of reasons. Firstly it is extremely green, in terms of both energy efficiency and plants and nature.
The homes will be kept warm by geo-thermal heat pumped from under the ground, while the 19th floor roof has a wind turbine and solar panels.
Then come the vertical gardens. Each home has its own outdoor space and these spaces are linked together in a single planting scheme covering the complex. These vertical gardens will be kept watered by a computer-driven automatic system, using rainwater that has been collected via the green roof.
The building will also include 200 nest boxes for swallows and other wildlife. ‘The aim is to get as close to nature as possible,’ says landscape architect Fred Booy of DS Landscape Architects, who designed the planting. ‘It will create something substantial for the city in the form of a new ecosystem.’
Unlike many new developments focusing on housing for ‘young professionals’ or ‘starters’ Vertical is attracting a wide variety of people, including many internationals.
‘What makes this project so special is that it has been designed by four different architects and a landscape architect,’ says Heijmans’ Raymond Raadtgever. ‘This means we have so many different types of home, from studios for starters to family homes and apartments specially designed for people who work from home. We are creating a really mixed community.’
The project is the first of a number of new developments close to Sloterdijk station which have been sanctioned by the city to try to ease the shortage of homes. In total, the Haven-Stad project will have up to 70,000 homes when completed.
In line with modern trends, Vertical will also have shared community spaces on the ground and sixth floorsl making the complex an inspiring and pleasant place to live. In total, 800m2 has been set aside for shared facilities, including restaurants and cafes, small businesses, flex-working spaces, an area for fitness and yoga, and cooking or dining in a private setting.
Friends and family can even stay the night in two comfortable ‘hotel rooms’, and there is space to celebrate special occasions with family and friends.
The building is just 50 metres from Sloterdijk station which has connections to all over the country, including Schiphol airport (11 minutes) and Zuidas (14 minutes), soon to be home to the European Medicines Agency.
The garage under the property will have space for 65 cars as well as two electric cars which can be rented by residents, and, being the Netherlands, space for 200 bicycles. After all, Vertical is also an easy bike ride from the city centre.
Of course, all this comes at a price. Family homes with all the facilities cost upwards of €495,000, but the payback comes in the form of lower energy bills and, points out Raymond Raadtgever, the mortgage payments will be no more than the rent of a family home in a less convenient location.
‘The housing market is booming and, however you look at it, a home in Vertical is a good investment,’ he says. The first tranche of homes has already been sold but the second batch is now up for grabs. You can sign up via the Amsterdam Vertical website.
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