NL Architects’s proposal for a new entertainment venue in Amsterdam makes Madison Square Garden seem like a funeral parlor. It’s an outdoor catwalk, a cinema, and a theater in one, and with its curved wooden frame, it looks like a bombed-out pirate ship from Star Trek that washed up on the shores of the IJ and wants to throw everyone a big ol' party. Did we mention that it spins?
The venue, Multi Mill, won first prize in a design competition for a “cultural meeting place" at the harbor recently, which means this bit of sorcery will actually be built. (Probably. Then again, remember that the Dutch love crazy social-engineering and crazier design.)
It’s clever for several reasons. First, it’s an incredibly efficient use of space. Instead of throwing up three separate facilities, you build one. It’s the equivalent of smashing together Madison Square Garden, Bryant Park, and the New Amsterdam Theatre--only outdoors, with a view of the water.