For years, the Schieblock office building in the centre of Rotterdam stood empty. Now the building has been redeveloped for temporary use as an urban laboratory, with office space for architectural studios, designers, researchers and cultural institutions. The initiative for the redevelopment was taken by a young architectural studio from Rotterdam, ZUS, who felt it was rather puzzling that a building on such a prominent location in the Rotterdam city centre could stand empty, especially because, at the same time, there was a great shortage of affordable office space for creatives.
In Rotterdam, a slow but certain ‘scattering’ of cultural institutions seems to be taking place, with museums, theatres and cinemas moving more and more to the outskirts. ZUS & CODUM felt the need to react to this development, and decided to start a new cultural facility in the Schieblock: ‘De Dépendance – centre for urban culture’. (text by Rosanne van Tilburg)