Walking route: architecture
There is plenty to discover in Eindhoven in the field of architecture. Are you going for a walk? This digital city guide takes you along all kinds of architectural highlights!
Start your walk on Stationsplein (Station Square).
In the future, this square will be transformed into District E and thus sketch a new landscape. The tall building on the other side is called The Student Hotel. This is both a hotel and a short stay facility. The Eindhoven train station, that you can find on your left, is a design by Koen van der Gaast and was built in 1956.
Rumor has it that the design is based on a Philips radio from that period of time, but the radio it's supposed to resemble was only devised seven years after the design of the train station. Recently, the inside of the station was completely renovated.
Walk through the station and exit the station on the right at the end. You’ve now reached the Kennedyplein and the Kennedytoren. This 83-meter high tower was designed by Van Aken Architectuur and completed in 2003. Walk straight ahead and turn to the left after you’ve passed the parking garage. In front of you, you see The Flying Pins, designed by Claes Oldenburg. On the left, you see the current and former Rabobank office. 95% of the materials of the old building have been reused in the new building. The old building can now be recognized as the office of the tax authorities.
Cross the street and walk towards the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e).
The university campus has undergone a lot of change in recent years. Enter the campus at the Kennispoort via Limbopad. Fun fact: This path owes its name to the large numbers of train students from Limburg who once created a path on this exact spot by their daily walks to and from the station.
After crossing the bridge, you see the Faculty of Architecture in front of you, called Vertigo. The building is a design by architectural firm Diederendirrix. The enameled print on the outside of the glass was inspired by Gaudi's Sagrada Familia scaffolding, as a symbol of the ever unfinished project of architecture. "
Stroll around the TU/e campus and walk along the pond with the solar panels towards the Dommeltunnel. The second tunnel is quite spectacular and is a good opportunity to stretch those legs. The walls inside the tunnel are decorated with the 'Silly Walk Eindhoven', based on John Cleese’s Ministry of Silly Walks from Monty Python. The work of art was created by graffiti artists Niels van Swaemen and Kaspar van Leek from Studio Giftig.
When you leave the tunnel you walk straight ahead and cross the Stationsweg. Turn to your left and walk towards the junction Parklaan and Nachtegaallaan. Now you are standing in front of Villa de Laak. The villa was built in 1907 by Johan Wilhelm Hanrath on behalf of Anton Philips. In addition to the villa, the terrain houses a coach house, orangery, coachman's house, gardener's house, driver's house and a garden that was laid out by Leonard Springer. Among others, Anton Philips and Henriëtte Anna Philips have lived here. The villa was also used as a residence for v.i.p. guests of Philips and for v.i.p. foreign visitors in Eindhoven.
Walk back in the direction you came from and head to Poppodium Effenaar, which has been located here since 2005. This building is a design from MVRDV office. The old facade next to the Effenaar is from a former linen factory. Walk through the Dommelstraat towards the city center. Cross the street at the traffic lights in front of the ING Bank, and walk straight ahead into the Nieuwstraat. Go left at the end of the street and walk across the Market Square. On the left, you see the concert hall ‘Muziekgebouw’. The entire lobby is a design by Van Eijk & Van der Lubbe. The furniture is made out of wood, copper, and gold, just like musical instruments.
Leave the Muziekgebouw.
Continue your way via the Jan van Lieshoutstraat. At number 26 you will find the oldest facade in Eindhoven, which now houses a café. You’ve now arrived at Catherinaplein, the square in front of St. Catharine’s Church. Enter the Smalle Haven, the street between Dynamo and Happy Italy. In the second part of this street, you will find stacked flats. By means of patios, terraces, and balconies all houses have an outdoor area. Jo Coenen, who drew the urban plan for the area, designed the adjacent Vestedatoren. Because of its rounded ends, the tower, which is not wide (fourteen meters on the widest part), seems even smaller. The first four floors contain office spaces, the twenty-four floors above, two apartments of 130 square meters on either side of the central area. At the top, there are two luxury penthouses consisting of two floors.
Exit Smalle Haven by turning right at the end of the street. You end up at a small square in the middle of Stratumseind. Continue your way to the end of Stratumseind and cross the small bridge. On the right, you now see the Van Abbemuseum. The entrance at the back is characterized by a small pink house, a design by artist John Körmeling. On the left, you will find the Bleekweg and down the road, the Schellensfabriek. In this former textile factory, you will now find a beer brewery and designer workshops.
Walk back to the square at Stratumseind and turn left towards Stadhuisplein. In this street, you pass the former courthouse on your left, which is formerly known as the Designhuis (design house). Turn right on Stadhuisplein and walk towards the St. Catharine’s Church. The church was built in 1240. Unfortunately, in the centuries that followed, the church had to endure a lot. In 1486 it was set on fire and in 1554, the church was hit by a city fire. In 1566 an Iconoclasm took place, during which Mary was destroyed. In the 19th century, the church was found to be too small and demolished, with no respect for the past. The current, neo-Gothic church is a design by Pierre Cuypers. In 1942 and 1944, it was severely damaged by bombing. After the war, a restoration followed by architect C.H. the Beaver. The old windows, which had been lost, were replaced by stained-glass windows by, among others, Charles Eyck and Pieter Wiegersma. The church has been a national monument since 1972.
Walk towards the Philips Museum via shopping street de Rechtestraat.
Don’t forget to look up once in a while, as this street is filled with surprisingly old facades. Turn left at the Vrijstraat and turn right into the Nieuwe Emmasingel. Here, you will the Philips Museum, at the exact location of Philips’s first little factory.
Enter the alley between the museum and the big residential tower. Across the street, you see a large white building called the Witte Dame (the white lady). This renovated factory building from Philips is a design by Dirk Roosenburg and was built in 1928-1931. Philips used the building for the production of light bulbs. It used to be part of a larger complex of Philips, with the first light bulb factory across the street and the Lichttoren at the beginning of the street. After the departure of Philips, the building was renovated by architect Bert Dirrix. De Witte Dame reopened in May 1998. Nowadays, you will find the Design Academy Eindhoven and the city library inside.
Walk to the Lichtplein, the courtyard of Witte Dame. On this square, you will find the former light test center of Philips, the LAC. This building will be demolished to make way for a park and houses. When you walk around the LAC, you end up at Victoriapark. The former Philips Lighting building has been transformed into homes with restaurants and shops on the ground floor. Go right and you will reach the Mathildelaan. Turn right and walk to the Lichttoren and the Blob (which means Binary Large Object). The Eindhoven Blob and the adjacent underground bicycle cellar (that looks like a subway entrance) were designed by the Italian Massimiliano Fuksas.
If you cross the 18 September square, you will see De Bijenkorf department store on your left with its distinctive green facade. The building is a design by Gio Ponti. The facade has been extended upwards by two extra storeys so that the architectural image does not change in the event of an extension. The changing patterns of the glazed green tiles, the irregular placement of narrow vertical windows, the lighting and the honeycomb pattern ensure a vivid facade. Cross the street towards the Central Station of Eindhoven. You’re done!