Home ITC“This building was created with the users in mind”

“This building was created with the users in mind” Heading North-West #7: An interview with Rob Nengerman and Marco Boevink

Rob Nengerman and Marco Boevink had worked together before, but never as intensively as In the preliminary phase of ITC's move to Langezijds. As project manager, Rob (R) was responsible for the entire construction process, from establishing the programme of requirements and design up to the implementation and delivery. Facility team leader Marco (M) was given the taxing job of coordinating the move itself. Both are part of the working group housing ITC

What was special about the building process?

R: “The new building needs to fulfill a lot of functions, such as education, lab spaces, office workplaces, study landscapes, learning spaces and a social heart. We have involved the users in the implementation of all these functions from the start. In close consultation with the entire design team we translated the programme of requirements into the final design. To name an example, the offices are positioned relatively sheltered on the ground floor while still having a connection to the inner gardens and the first floor. All in all, the process has resulted in an open, transparent and sustainable environment, where working, studying and meeting people go together very nicely.”

What are you working on in this final phase of the project?

R: “We are still completing the green inner gardens and furnishing the pantries, lockers, counters and the like. My main role now is to ensure that the executing parties live up to the agreements and that the required inspections are carried out. In addition, we are in the process of setting up the area around the new building, including bicycle parking spaces for employees and students.” M: “We are also still working on implementing a digital locking system. Users will use their employee card to gain access. This card can no longer be used to pay for catering. From now on, a regular debit card will be required for that. In addition, we are very busy cleaning up the current building. We also try to trigger colleagues to start working on this in good time.”

When will the move take place?

M: “We planned to move in week 16, and from Monday 24 April users should be able to work in the new building. That date is now final, and we will contact the users and all suppliers who will help us. The lion's share of the move will be carried out by the UT's preferred supplier, while the lab facilities will be moved by a specialized party. For the relocation of the ICT facilities we work closely with LISA. The first few days, LISA employees will also be present in the new building to support users where necessary.”

What will happen to the existing furniture?

M: “All furniture that is in the current building will remain there. The UT has decided to use only sustainable furniture in the new building, which we have selected in agreement with the users. The furniture that remains behind will all be reused in some way, within the UT as well as in other organizations.”

What is your impression of ITC staff’s expectations regarding the move?

R: “You can tell that for them it’s really taking shape now. This is also due to the guided tours we have provided in the past period. For many, looking at a construction drawing is something completely different from actually experiencing the physical place. Most are pleasantly surprised, also about the space they will have in the new building.” M: “We are now showing the various BHV [emergency response; ed.] teams around as well, so that they know how everything fits together.”

Will everything be ready once the move is completed?

R: “No, there are always some residual points that need to be cleared up. We will also be conducting operational tests for some time. It always takes a while for a new building to get everything set up properly, especially when it comes to today's advanced climate systems. In essence, you need to go through all the seasons before it all works the way it was designed.”

How do you look back on the project?

M: “It was quite an operation, but above all a very nice challenge. You don't often get to be part of an extensive project such as this, and the collaboration with Faculty ITC went very smoothly. It’s been great to be involved.” R: “I think we succeeded in our task of realizing an attractive modern building with its own entrance on campus. This building was created with the users in mind and I hope it will meet their expectations. As for the collaboration with Marco, we’re already looking forward to the next project we will be doing together.”


Heading North-West

In 2023, the Faculty ITC will relocate to the campus of the University of Twente, where a former lab complex is being transformed into a unique education and office building. As the move from the current location on Hengelosestraat will take ITC in a north-westerly direction, the project has been called “Heading North-West” by some. This is also the title of a series of articles in which ITC staff – both scientific and supporting – and students are interviewed about their reasons for being excited about the impending move. Please visit utwente.nl/ltsh for more information. Check this photo album to view the building progress, photographed by Jeroen Verplanke.