Tiled floors as a form of traffic system
‘Floors in a foyer are like business cards. They set the tone and ensure visitors can find their way in large buildings; you know where you are so you feel more comfortable and at ease. You can notice this in the new Maastricht University Medical Centre (MUMC+) building,’ says architect Luc Nooijen, who works for Architecten aan de Maas in Maastricht.
‘The old and new buildings needed to join together seamlessly, and the glass hallway in the new building had to blend naturally with the public spaces in the rest of the hospital. This was all made possible by the eye-catching floor that draws all the public spaces together. Aspects such as its connection with other areas, safety because of the large amount of footfall, maintenance, and ambiance were very important for us.
I wanted a vibrant but subtle floor, which could possibly be added to the existing building at a later date. Solids provided this opportunity. The choice of tile was made much easier by Mosa not just suggesting looking at the tile in their showroom, but also having it laid in two rooms in the hospital with a surface area of 50 square metres, so we could gauge the reactions of users and experts. This also meant we were able to test the tile out in terms of its quality, aesthetic, colour, shading, and future durability. We then decided to position the tiles at right angles to each other, which gave the floor a natural, luxurious, timeless character, while at the same time apparently enlarging the area slightly. When I look at the building now, I can see that its modernity, strength, and welcoming ambiance suit the very light, clinical appearance of the old building extremely well. We’ve created a building that’s retained its airiness while also radiating the warmth and relaxation that fits in perfectly with the contemporary style.’
Read more about the new Maastricht University Medical Centre here.