ION-LIFE proposal for Antwerp’s Cadix district obtains second place

Design contest
As part of the redevelopment of the Cadix district — the former dockland area on Het Eilandje (‘the little island’) in Antwerp — AG Vespa, the city’s autonomous municipal company for property and urban development, organized a design contest for the sale of a building plot adjacent to the Kattendijk dock. Property developer ION and Antwerp-based developer LIFE joined forces, creating the joint venture ION-LIFE, which entered this contest along with 16 other potential buyers.

Extensive teamwork
ION-LIFE put together an impressive team of architects, including representatives from FVWW, De Smet Vermeulen architects, Havan-a, De Gouden Liniaal and Studio Basta. Engineering agency Ingenium was also involved, to ensure the project’s sustainability. All in all, more than 30 parties contributed to this project proposal, which was submitted in October 2015.

Design with powerful vision
AG Vespa looked for a mixed design that would ensure the sustainable development of the Cadix district. ION-LIFE’s project fully supports the mission and core values of the reconstruction of Het Eilandje. The design brings together seven depots in a diverse ensemble that respects the historical maritime context of the Cadix district. The integration of a low wharf building ensures optimum use of sunlight in the spacious courtyard, as well as in the housing units. In addition to the extensive residential programme, the presence of small-scale retail, restaurants and bars provides a lively atmosphere. Along the quay and adjacent to the buildings, ION-LIFE opted for an evocative, colourful work of art made by visual artist Jan van Munster.

Commendable second place
Out of the 17 design proposals, ION-LIFE came in second. ION wishes to explicitly thank all partners involved for their intensive collaboration and support, and would hereby also like to congratulate the winning developer, CIP.

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