July 22, 2004
ARCAM has very limited hours, from 1pm to 5pm, and it is also closed on Mondays. Entrance is free. Even if you are not interested in seeing the exhibitions, you are welcome to use its information point, which is a great resource of books, magazines, maps and articles about local architecture and urban planning. While the average tourist may wander in to ask where the red light district is located, the more curious traveler may stop and inquire about what is new and exciting in world of Amsterdam architecture.
ARCAM is a foundation that emphasizes architecture and urban design in Amsterdam and its surrounding areas. It strives to present six exhibitions a year related to architects, new buildings and urban developments, such as an exhibit on recent high-rise buildings in Amsterdam. ARCAM also organizes tours, lectures and forums. The public main level features the information point along with the exhibition space. The offices of ARCAM are on the top floor, while the lower level along the waterfront has meeting space. The levels are spatially connected to give an airy feel to the interiors.
While ARCAM promotes architecture with its programs and exhibitions, the pavilion itself is a shining example of an exciting new building in Amsterdam, one of many that have sprung up all over the Netherlands. The shape of the structure defies description and may best be called a sculptural element. The side facing the water is glass so the inhabitants can appreciate one of the great assets of Amsterdam. The rest of the building, including the rounded roof, is clad with silvery Kalzip aluminum sheets, which allow the imaginative design to be more amorphous than the typical building.
One can walk from Centraal Station to ARCAM in about fifteen minutes. Otherwise the bus or Museum boat can drop you off nearby.
From journal Bill In the Netherlands - AMSTERDAM