Brunelleschi’s Role

26 February 2018 – Last weekend I was in New York for the opening of the exhibition ‘Social Housing, New European Projects’ in the Center for Architecture. My contributions were a large model of the refurbishment of the Knikkers in >>>

Street Architecture

6 February 2018 – Street Architecture is published. After three and a half years of hard work in my own office, a new portfolio appears and with it, a new monograph. Karin Templin, a London and Florence based expert in >>>

Upon South

5 February 2018 – We work on a new social housing project at Persoonshaven in Feijenoord, as Rotterdammers say: Upon South. On the occasion of the preliminary design, we made an imaginary vedute from the window of the new houses. >>>

European Projects

24 January 2018 – Across Europe, a new generation of architecture practices are transforming affordable housing. Responding to continued need, changing clients, and new funding methods, architects are once again addressing how homes can be delivered at scale while piloting >>>

Carpenter’s Eye

17 January 2018 – The editors of Architectenweb invited me to write a monthly column for their website. This will appear under the title The Carpenter’s Eye. I like that term. In the Dutch language it stands for the ability >>>

Bay windows

15 January 2018 – The scaffoldings on the construction site of Churchillpark in Leiden are being taken down. Now it shows how beautiful the repeating windows are and how the mixed brown bricks relate to the cream coloured window timberwork, >>>


1 December 2017 – A book has been published on the manifestation City Heart Dwelling (Wonen in Stadshart, WISH). The city of Groningen commissioned me to study the Glaudé Mansions at Hereweg. The result is now included in the book. >>>


21 November 2017 – In the context of a lecture series on the urban dwelling block I was invited to present the houses at Oranjeboomstraat at the Architecture Faculty at TU Delft. It was busy. The 2nd year Bachelor students >>>

Tea Towel

19 November 2017 – In the spring of 2018 I will be a guest teacher at the Architecture School of Rotterdam and Universität Liechtenstein in Vaduz. I will run parallel design courses in which students research the Palazzo as the >>>

Kollhoff’s Polder

6 July 2017 – Yesterday evening I had the pleasure to present Post Piraeus, the publication we made with 10 architects about Hans Kollhoff’s renowned housing block, to the architect. Kollhoff would not be Kollhoff if he did not use >>>

Building Matter

27 June 2017 – On the Archined website Elmar Koers discusses the Kloosterbuuren project. ‘The spatial quality of the new ensemble is high. In masterly fashion, Van der Heijden makes alleys, streets and a square with the most simple means: >>>


14 June 2017 – On the 2nd and 3rd of June I was a guest at the CANactions architecture festival in Kiev. The theme of this yearly event was: values. My contribution was a lecture on the topic of luxury. >>>

Post Piraeus

26 May 2017 – On 5 July the book ‘Post Piraeus’ will be launched at a festive gathering in Pakhuis De Zwijger, Amsterdam. In 1994, the housing block Piraeus was completed to the design of Hans Kollhoff and Christian Rapp. >>>


23 May 2017 – Imagination, the word does not always have a nice resonance. Yet, the Dutch state architect Floris Alkemade used the word quite often in his opening speech at the exhibition Wonen in Stadshart in Groningen. At the >>>

Mock-ups Churchillpark

19 May 2017 – Mock-ups of the brickwork were made at the construction site of Churchillpark. The brightly red bricks of the atrium block appear very well. The two point blocks and row housing are in decent yellow-brown tones. The >>>

Crafting the Façade

19 April 2017 – My colleague Machiel Spaans invited me for a key note lecture at the Conference ‘Crafting the Façade’ at the University of Liechtenstein in Vaduz. Students of three Universities in Glasgow, Amsterdam and Liechtenstein researched and developed >>>

RIBA features Ommoord

29 March 2017 – The renovation project for the splayed apartment blocks in Rotterdam Ommoord features in a new reference book on social housing design published by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). Bringing together 24 exemplar case studies >>>

300 Year Bluecoat

14 March 2017 – This year, the artists of the Bluecoat in Liverpool are celebrating the 300th anniversary of their building. In 1717, Bryan Blundell established a ‘Blue Coat Hospital´. In the centuries that followed, the building was perpetually changed >>>

Tailor fit Response

18 January 2017 – Ever more people like city living. There is ample space available, yet many people do not find a proper place. Especially older people, starters on the housing market, entrepreneurs and urban families find this difficult. The >>>

Building Studies

16 December 2016 – German architecture schools still offer courses in Building Studies. At the university of Kaiserslautern the students Sandra Brand and Eric Schindler studied the housing at Oranjeboomstraat. They wrote me that the type of the House with >>>

On Site

30 November 2016 – The ground breaking ceromony of the dwellings at Churchillpark in Leiden was guided by Paul Laudy, Counselor of the City of Leiden and Heleen Aarts, director of urban development of Amvest. It is expected that the >>>

WerkBundStadt Spreebord

24 september 2016 – My designs for Berlin feature in the book WerkBundStadt Am Spreebord which presents the location for the new WerkBundStadt, comments on the results of the design procedure, and presents in detail the designs by the 33 >>>

City Heart Dwelling

7 September 2016 – Because city living becomes ever more popular in Groningen, the City Council is organizing the event City Heart Dwelling. Together with 10 colleague architects and urbanists I will investigate the possibilities to supply more dwellings within >>>

Starter Homes in AR

3 August 2016 – Ten years after completion of the so-called Starter Homes in Pleinen, Hoofddorp the project is topical again. This month, the magazine Architectural Review presented the dwellings for first-time buyers as an exemplary housing estate in their >>>

Corner Block Berlin

11 July 2016 – I am going to build in Berlin. Together with 30 other architects I was invited by the Berliner Werkbund to contribute to a new model housing estate. After the famous example of the 1927 Weißenhofsiedlung a >>>

Sir Winston in Leiden

7 July 2016 – The first design of Hans van der Heijden Architect will start on site shortly. Amvest has reached an agreement with Bouwbedrijf Niersman from Voorschoten about the construction of 99 dwellings in Churchillpark, Leiden. The working drawings >>>

Drie Hoefijzers

6 July 2016 – I am invited by AM to work on the Drie Hoefijzers, the new district behind the railway station of Breda. Next week AM will organize a workshop in which the architects will present their first designs >>>

City Dialogue

20 June 2016 – Once a year the so-called City Dialogue takes place in Bremen, Germany. Representatives of social housing trusts, real estate managements, city administration, education and the development and design world come together to discuss topical themes. This >>>

Flemish Craft

25 May 2016 – After twenty years, a new monograph on the work of my Flemish colleagues De Smet Vermeulen Architects is now available. Critical texts from independent authors and a detailed discussion of seven projects, by way of texts, >>>


3 May 2016 – Some weeks ago, together with my colleague-architect Hugh Strange, I re-visited the housing project at Oranjeboomstraat in South Rotterdam. As a practitioner he looked at various details such as the way the chamfered street corner has >>>