A Multigenerational Home in Amsterdam Can Be Reconfigured for Changing Demands

BETA Office for Architecture and the City create a five-story residence designed to accommodate and adapt to the needs of a couple with young children, as well as their elderly parents.
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This five-story tower, designed for three generations of a Dutch family, is an example of how multigenerational living benefits city dwellers of all ages. Two separate apartments are stacked directly above one another to create a home where the family and their elderly parents can enjoy each other’s company without sacrificing the advantages of privacy.

The grandparents live in the topmost apartment, which has an elevator, level floors, and wider door openings for accessibility in old age. Also included is a large terrace where other family members can come to relax.

Unlike many multistory homes, the elderly couple live on the top-floor apartment which has been accessibly designed to accommodate wheelchairs and reduced physical ability. When needed, the entire building can be reconfigured into four apartments, allowing the children to have their own space once they grow up.

Light partition walls separate the rooms into two areas. The whole building is designed so it can be reconfigured from two apartments into four, accommodating changing demands over time.

The building does not have one specific communal space for group encounters. Both apartments within the structure have large living spaces and balconies with views of Amsterdam.

Structural concrete walls define the form of the interior spaces, but the architects wanted to add some vibrancy to the home. An angular staircase is painted bright yellow to make a visual impact.  

The sculptural home features a lot of concrete, with bright yellow painted walls providing the interior spaces with vibrant pops of color. The home is a great example of cohabiting in an urban context, and a reminder that all generations should look out for one another.

The dining area features a single-wall kitchen, warm timber, and a long wooden dining table. This zone shows how multiple parts of the home are joined by the sculptural staircase.

The kitchen/dining space has a direct relationship with the garden.

Three Generation House by BETA Office for Architecture and the City is located in Amsterdam.

Text by Steph Wade, excerpted from Come Together: The Architecture of Multigenerational Living (gestalten, 2021). Edited by gestalten and Joann Plockova.

Come Together: The Architecture of Multigenerational Living
Three, four, or sometimes more generations of the same family often opt to live together under one roof.

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